Segments Filmed In Smithfield, Selma And Clayton
A Johnston County private investigator will be featured on the national TV show “48 Hours” this weekend.
David Marshburn, the owner of Marshburn Investigation Agency on Third Street in Smithfield, spentnearly 2 years trying to find the remains of Army Specialist Kelli Bordeaux who disappeared from a Fayetteville nightclub. Marshburn eventually befriended the main suspect in the case who confessed to him where the body was located.
Marshburn will be part of the show that airs Saturday night at 10:00pm on CBS.
On April 14, 2012, Bordeaux, a 23 year-old Combat Medic assigned to the 601st Area Support Medical Company, 44th Medical Brigade at Fort Bragg disappeared. She was last seen alive at Froggy Bottoms, a club where she had gone to sing karaoke.
Nicholas Holbert, who was also 23 at the time, was the last person Fayetteville Police believed saw Bordeaux alive before she disappeared.
As the case went unsolved for months, Marshburn said he wanted to help bring closure to a grieving family, even though he had never met Bordeaux or her relatives. He told WTSB News that every family of a missing person deserves closure.
“When I first watched Holbert’s television interviews, he didn’t seem to be as truthful to me as he did to everyone else,” Marshburn said. “If you met him he seemed like a regular guy, but you had to read between the lines.” Marshburn said that in most missing person cases the last person to see the victim alive is usually the one involved.
When Holbert was released from jail on an unrelated sex offender charge, in October 2013, Marshburn decided to interview him.
“I didn’t know what I was going to say,” Marshburn said. “But no one’s ever a stranger to me.”
Marshburn gained Holbert’s confidence by having him do some landscaping work for him at his Lillington office. He then brought Holbert to his Smithfield office.
The next day, Marshburn said, he and Holbert went to the now-closed Froggy Bottom club where Bordeaux was last seen alive.
Marshburn said he and Holbert were behind the club where he had his camp and he asked Holbert if he was ready to talk about his involvement in the Bordeaux case.
Holbert bowed his head and said “yes,” Marshburn said. Marshburn asked Holbert where Bordeaux’s body was located, and he allegedly told him.
On May 13th, 2014, Holbert led Marshburn down an old country path, with lots of branches, about 500 feet into the woods off I-295 in Cumberland County. The area was so grown up, with a wall of briers, that Marshburn said you could hardly walk through there.
Marshburn, along with a co-worker and Marshburn’s dog, Kaz, searched the area until about 7 pm but didn’t find anything.
Marshburn said he didn’t want to “overload Holbert’s mind” and got him a motel room in Johnston County.
“I told him (Hobert) that I knew he was going through a lot of feelings.”
The next morning, May 14th, Marshburn said he went back to the Fayetteville location with Holbert and his cadaver K9.
At around 11:00 am, Marshburn said he found the spot where Bordeaux’s body was buried.
“We didn’t let Nick know,” Marshburn said. “If we let him know, who’s to say he wouldn’t change his mind and we’d end up out there.”
Within a few minutes, Marshburn called Fayetteville Police and they soon arrived on the scene.
Marshburn and Holbert went back to the scene with three police investigators. They wanted Holbert to lead them to the exact spot, Marshburn said, but he couldn’t do it because the area had grown up so much.
Marshburn rode to the Fayetteville Police Department with Holbert but was not present during his police interview. Marshburn said Holbert reportedly told police everything.
Holbert was charged with first-degree murder and first-degree kidnapping in the case. He pled guilty to the fatal beating in August 2015 and is now serving a life sentence.
Arrest warrants allege that he and Bordeaux were at Froggy Bottoms together and got into a fight in the parking lot.
Police say he knocked Bordeaux unconscious and carried her back to his home where he hit her several more times in her head until she died.
Marshburn attended Bordeaux’s memorial service. When he met Bordeaux’s family, he said they didn’t speak to one another. “We just hugged, it was a very emotional feeling.”
The “48 Hours” documentary was filmed in Fayetteville, Smithfield, Selma and Clayton. GI Joes on US70 in Clayton was also used for some of the filming.
Marshburn, who is 39, returned to the site the body was buried last week for the taping. He was joined by Cumberland County District Attorney Billy West.
Viewers will be able to see a never before released video confession by Holbert.
Marshburn still thinks of the Kelli Bordeaux case often, but has now moved on trying to solve the missing persons case of Roger Chambers from Hoke County who was last seen 5 years ago.