Harnett County authorities investigate after 2 bodies discovered

Michael Todd Denning and Robin Chalmers Brown (Harnett County Sheriff's Office)

BROADWAY, N.C. (WNCN) – Harnett County deputies are investigating the connection between two bodies found about 20 miles apart.

Deputies found a dead man at a home in Coats and investigators said evidence at the scene led them to the decomposing body of a woman in Broadway.

Early Thursday morning, 911 dispatchers received a call from a man who said his uncle was in danger at a house on Bailey Road.

“A friend called us and said we need to get the cops there, that they were beating him, and said they were going to finish him off tonight over some stolen (expletive),” the caller told the dispatcher.

Deputies found the body of 39-year-old Marcus Lester Fisher in the backyard of the home. They arrested Michael Todd Denning, who lives at the home, and Robin Chalmers Brown for concealing or failing to report a death.

A former girlfriend of Fisher’s said he and Denning were brothers, and that she considered them both as her friends. A woman who identified herself a cousin of Fisher’s said she had not heard from him in years and did not know he was back in the area.

Neighbors said they knew little about the people involved or what happened. Two different homeowners who did not want to be identified said Denning had been in the house about a year. They occasionally saw him and other people working on cars in the driveway, but did not have conversations with him.

William Edmonson said he moved at the beginning of the year into his home several doors from Denning, but never met him.

“It’s horrible what’s gone on. I can’t believe that they found a body in the yard, and I’ve got small children here,” Edmonson said.

“The neighbor brings his grandchildren every weekend. It’s just sad to see that going on on this road. I’ve been here seven months and never a disturbance or anything.

He said he is relieved to know the suspects are in jail and hopes there are not any other victims in this case.

Investigators have not identified a woman whose body was found in woods near the intersection of Cool Springs Rood and Womack Road near Broadway. Deputies said “the body is significantly decomposed.”

They said they believe the victim is a white female in her 20s to 30s and weighing between 125 and 140 pounds.


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