Prosecutors have dropped criminal charges against all four suspects charged in the Cole Thomas case.
Thomas disappeared in Benson on Nov. 25, 2016. The 22 year-old man has not been seen or heard from since that day. His disappearance is being treated as a homicide although his body has never been found.
In July 2017, Benson Police and the NC State Bureau of Investigation arrested four suspects.
Jeremy Brian Carpenter of Taylor Falls, Minnesota was arrested and charged with four felony counts of obstruction of justice and one felony charge of concealment of a death.
Julian Valles Jr. of Dudley was charged with three counts of obstruction of justice and one count of concealment of a death.
Anthony Ridell James of Mt. Olive was charged with one count of obstruction of justice and one count of concealment of a death.
Rudolfo DeLeon Jr. of Mt. Olive was charged with concealment of a death.
“The investigation into the death of Cole Thomas is ongoing,” Johnston County District Attorney Susan Doyle told JoCoReport on Wednesday. “The North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation continues to follow up on all new information. After a thorough review of the case as it stands today, I made the decision to dismiss the current charges in order to avoid compromising any potential future homicide prosecutions.”
A $5,000 reward is being offered by the Office of NC Governor for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the disappearance of Cole Thomas.
Anyone with information about the case is asked to contact the Benson Police Department at 919-894-2091 or the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation – Raleigh Office at 919-779-8188. Callers can remain anonymous.