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Old 08-11-2004, 02:28 AM
madgallico madgallico is offline
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Colorado
Posts: 113
Woman found in car trunk

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Bynum filed for divorce
CARTHAGE - The husband of a woman found strangled in the trunk of her car filed for divorce just over a month before her murder, court records from Moore County show.

The Rev. Melvin Bynum, pastor at Cry Out Loud Ministries in Sanford, filed June 21 for a divorce after 19 years from his now deceased wife Marnita, claiming that the couple hadn't lived together since October of 2001. All other reports indicate, however, that the couple did live together in Aberdeen.
"From our information, it certainly appears that they were living together," said Moore County Sheriff's Chief Deputy Neil Godfrey.

Marnita Bynum was found stragled in the trunk of her car on a rural road in Richmond County on Aug. 2. Deputies there said she had been in the trunk for at least a day, although Melvin Bynum reportedly told his congregation that she was home sick that Sunday.

Deputies in Moore and Richmond counties won't say if Melvin Bynum is a suspect, although they have questioned him and searched the couple's home.

Richmond County deputies have said they hope to make an arrest soon.

Now, information has surfaced that Melvin Bynum filed for a divorce in June. The papers didn't give a reason for the divorce other than to say that it was uncontested and the couple hadn't lived together since late 2001. The papers indicate that there would be no pending alimony or custody actions for the couple's two children.

On July 26, only a week before Marnita's death, Melvin Bynum filed a motion for a summary judgement, in essence asking a judge to go ahead and approve the divorce. A hearing had been set for Aug. 23.

Melvin Bynum could not be reached for comment. His personal phone line at the church appears to have been disconnected and the Web site for his church has been taken off the Internet.

Bynum's attorney for the divorce proceeding, Mary Pope of Southern Pines, could not be reached Tuesday.

The revelations about the Bynums' marital status raise more questions about the case. From all indications the couple did live together and members of the church appeared to have believed the couple was together.

This is starting to sound like another husband killing his wife. If not, I apologize. Anymore it just seems to set off warning alarms.

Rest In Peace Dear Marnita Bynum

I hope this is solved soon for the family's sake.
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Old 08-11-2004, 04:49 PM
Arielle Arielle is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 887
Originally Posted by madgallico
Wednesday, August 11, 2004

This is starting to sound like another husband killing his wife. If not, I apologize. Anymore it just seems to set off warning alarms.

Rest In Peace Dear Marnita Bynum

I hope this is solved soon for the family's sake.
Unfortunately, most people who are murdered are murdered by someone they know, not by strangers. Men tend to be more aggressive and violent. Therefore, it seems to me, statistically wives are more likely to be killed by husbands than any other possiblilty.

Hopefully what I just said there makes sense. It does in my head, but I can't word it very well.
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Old 08-11-2004, 04:54 PM
PrayersForMaura's Avatar
PrayersForMaura PrayersForMaura is offline
Help Find Maura Murray
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Midwest
Posts: 14,239
sounds fishy to me. I would suspect the husband.
I did right off in both the Peterson and Hacking case. It's sad but true.
Most wives who die of murder do die by the hands of their husband or exhusband.
Rest in Peace to my best buddy and baby, Buster ~ He crossed the Rainbow Bridge on Jan. 3, 2011. I miss you, Buster and love you with all my being.
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Old 08-20-2004, 04:07 PM
madgallico madgallico is offline
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Colorado
Posts: 113
Friday, August 20, 2004

Police arrest Melvin Bynum
Herald Staff Writer

SANFORD - A murder investigation spanning three counties ended Thursday night outside a Sanford restaurant when the Rev. Melvin Bynum, 43, pastor at Cry Out Loud Ministries, was arrested for the murder of his wife Marnita.
Sanford officers were alerted to look for Bynum's vehicle after Richmond County sheriff's deputies drew a warrant charging him with murder Thursday afternoon. Richmond County officers thought Bynum would be heading from Sanford to Smithfield and issued a call for area officers to be on the lookout for him Thursday evening, according to police broadcasts.

Around 8 p.m., a Sanford officer spotted the vehicle heading north on Horner Boulevard, stopped it outside the Brass Kettle Restaurant, and held Bynum until Richmond detectives arrived. Reports indicate that Bynum offered no resistance.

Richmond County Sheriff Dale Furr will make a statement outside the Sheriff's Office in Rockingham today at 11 a.m. Richmond County deputies refused to release any information Thursday night.

Marnita Bynum, 40, was found dead in the trunk of her Chrysler Sebring on a rural road in Richmond County in the early morning hours of Aug. 2, although deputies had spotted the car about 24 hours earlier.

She had been strangled.

Deputies said her husband told his congregation on Aug. 1 - when they already knew Marnita Bynum to have been dead - that she was home with a toothache.

Because of the varied locales in the case - the couple's home in Aberdeen, the church in Sanford and the Richmond County road where the body was found - Richmond, Moore and Lee County authorities were all involved in the investigation.

Moore County Sheriff's Chief Deputy Neil Godfrey said Thursday night that Melvin Bynum was arrested "based on a combination of evidence we'd received from the SBI lab and information that came to us (Thursday)."

But suspicion of Melvin Bynum as the murderer wasn't new. He was subjected to a 16-hour interview the day after the body was found, and authorities reportedly searched the couple's home and two vehicles for evidence.

Also, court papers from Moore County show that Melvin Bynum had filed for a divorce about a month before the murder. In the papers, Bynum claimed - contrary to all other indications - that he and Marnita hadn't lived together in almost three years.

Multiple reports also confirmed the couple was having its share of marital troubles. A childhood friend of Marnita Bynum told The Herald in the days after her murder that she feared Melvin Bynum would kill her.

Melvin Bynum was taken to the Richmond County Jail, where he will be held without bond until he makes a court appearance.
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