‘Armed and dangerous’ Wayne County felon captured in Kinston

BREAKING: Ricky Ward was captured Wednesday afternoon in Kinston, officials confirmed.

CBS North Carolina will update this story as it develops.

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KINSTON, N.C. (WNCN) — A manhunt is underway in Kinston for a Wayne County man wanted in connection with a murder and other crimes in Wayne and Wake counties, Kinston police said Wednesday.

According to police, Ricky Terrell Ward, 33, of Mt. Olive, was in a vehicle during a routine traffic stop when he jumped out and ran from police. The vehicle was stolen but had yet to be reported as such, police said.

Police and the Lenoir County Sheriff’s Office have since closed off Queen and Heritage streets south of King Street to U.S. Route 70 as they search for Ward. Authorities are searching in the area of S. Queen and Shine streets.

Around 1 p.m., dozens of officers, including an armored vehicle and a police robot, were on scene. State Bureau of Investigation agents in protective gear trained rifles on a building near downtown Kinston and police moved media and on-lookers back from the scene as a safety precaution, CBS North Carolina’s Robert Richardson reported.

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Ward is wanted in Wayne County for attempted robbery with a dangerous weapon, discharging a weapon into an occupied property, and possession of a firearm by a felon. He is wanted in Wake County for possession of a firearm by a felon and robbery with a dangerous weapon. There are also orders for arrest out on Ward for possession of a firearm by a prisoner, arson, and failure to appear. He is also a suspect in the murder of David Demarlo Thompson, 35, who was found shot in his yard in Dudley.

Authorities in Wayne County initiated a “code red” Monday while searching for Ward. The Monday code red was issued to Wayne County residents within three miles of Durham Lake Road after a gunman was seen running into the woods.

Ward is also wanted by the Raleigh Police Department for charges in the theft of a missing man’s car from Wake County, officials said.

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The car is registered to Justice Courtney Lyons, 22, who was reported missing to Raleigh police and hasn’t been seen since March 19.

Although Lyons is still missing, the car was recovered when Ward wrecked the vehicle after Wayne County Deputies tried to stop him on U.S. 70 on March 27, officials said.

If anyone knows the location of Ward they are asked to call the Kinston Police Department at 252-939-3160, the TIPS LINE at 252-939-4020 or Lenoir County Crime Stoppers at 252-523-4444.

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