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Kannapolis man found guilty of Godfrey’s 2017 murder

SALISBURY — Jurors on Tuesday found a Kannapolis man, Donald Frye, guilty of the April 2017 murder of Sheila Godfrey at her home on Lyerly Pond Road.

The verdict came after a two-week trial.

Frye was specifically found guilty on charges of first-degree murder, robbery with a dangerous weapon and felony breaking and entering. He was sentenced to life without parole for first-degree murder, 10 to 13 years for robbery with a dangerous weapon and nine to 12 years for breaking and entering.

Frye was accused of beating and strangling Godfrey before trading her stolen items for crack.

Godfrey, 53, was found dead by her son-in-aw Jacob Lind and Alcohol Law Enforcement Agent Jerry Dean lying facedown in her kitchen. Godfrey’s daughter, Jessica Lind, had asked for Dean’s help when she couldn’t get her mother to reply to text messages or phone calls.

During the two-week trial, detectives heard about DNA evidence, the location to which Frye’s phone pinged on the night Godfrey was killed and from Frye’s former cellmate, Eric Knabb.

Knabb told the court last week that Frye told him he was haunted by the death of a friend. While Frye did not state the name of that friend, Knabb said he believed it was Godfrey.

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