Rowan County authorities charge two men in connection with Melanie Clark murder

Published 10:02 am Thursday, April 5, 2018

By Shavonne Walker

SALISBURY — Two men who authorities say used a debit card stolen from a grandmother found dead late last month have been charged with identity fraud.

Authorities said the two men know the woman’s grandson, who is charged with murder in her death.

According to the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office, Creaig Wilson Helms Jr. and Cory Wayne Harrington were spotted using a debit card belonging to Melanie Anita Clark at an ATM.

Helms and Harrington are associates of Joshua Dimitri Clark, who is charged with murdering Melanie Clark, his grandmother, authorities said.

Clark’s body was discovered March 26 by family members after she had not been seen or heard from for days and did not show up for Sunday church services March 25. Emergency personnel went to her Dulin Avenue home for what was initially believed to be a cardiac arrest. Authorities realized she was dead as a result of gunshot wounds.

Her grandson was arrested March 27 after detectives searched a home at 225 Happy Lake Road in Rockwell.

Rowan County investigators say Melanie Clark’s pocketbook was stolen and a debit card was used at several locations after her death.

Helms and Harrington are seen in ATM security video with their faces covered to hide their identities, authorities said.

After consultation with the Rowan County District Attorney’s Office, investigators obtained arrest warrants for the pair on felony identity theft charges.

Helms was arrested Wednesday and placed in the Rowan County Detention Center under a $10,000 secured bond.

Deputies attempted to arrest Harrington at a residence at 2750 Saw Road in southern Rowan County. When they arrived at the house, Harrington jumped from a window, authorities said. After a short foot chase, Harrington was arrested a short distance away.

Harrington was placed in the Rowan Detention Center under a $60,000 secured bond.

Joshua Clark also faces a charge of robbery with a dangerous weapon. He remains in the Rowan County jail without bond.



Contact reporter Shavonne Walker at 704-797-4243.