Timing of protective order allowed suspected killer to walk free

Garry Yarborough, charged in Franklinton murder.

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – A WNCN Investigation has discovered why the domestic violence protective order murder victim Tracy Williams filed was never served on suspect Garry Yarbrough.


It turns out every part of the law enforcement system did its job — but the timing of what happened was wrong. Yarborough walked free before that protective order was served while he was in custody.

Yarborough was shipped from Johnston County to Wake County on July 6 after being accused of holding Williams at gunpoint in Zebulon  in Johnston County….

Because the kidnapping of Williams began in Wake County, the case belonged to Wake County even though she was held at gunpoint in Yarbrough’s Johnston County house home.

So when Yarborough surrendered in Johnston County on July 6, he was transported to Wake County to face the charges.

In Wake County, Yarbrough posted a $75,000 bond.

Court documents uncovered by WNCN show Yarborough was released on bail at 12.53 p.m. on July 6.

Meanwhile the clock was ticking and the ex-girlfriend was working with the courts to file a domestic violence protection order. Just about two hours later, that order was ready..

A time stamp on the document uncovered by WNCN shows the protective order was entered into the system 2.55 p.m. on July 6. But Yarborough was no longer in custody when the order became active, so police had no idea he needed to be served.

The ironic part is that on Friday, Gov. McCrory signed a bill that gives immediate protection to those who file domestic violence protective order — removing the roadblock that slowed down the filing of those orders.

The bill went into effect immediately.


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