HOLLY SPRINGS, N.C. – A North Carolina registered sex offender pulled over for speeding Friday afternoon was charged with murder over the weekend after the owner of the vehicle he was driving was found dead in the trunk, authorities said.
Lance Darnell Gordon, 32, of Raleigh, is also charged with theft of a motor vehicle and a felony probation violation, according to Wake County Jail records.
Authorities told CBS 17 in Raleigh that a North Carolina state trooper pulled Gordon over around 4 p.m. Friday for speeding in Edgecombe County. The trooper learned the vehicle he was driving was owned by Angela Mac Lee, 47, of Holly Springs.
Gordon told the trooper he and Lee were acquaintances, CBS 17 reported. He was arrested during the traffic stop on an outstanding warrant, police said.
Meanwhile, the state Highway Patrol asked Holly Springs police officers to help track down Lee to see if she was aware that Gordon was driving her car.
When officers went to Lee’s home Friday and Saturday and could not find her, they began an investigation into her whereabouts, the news station reported. That included search warrants for both her home and vehicle, which was still in Edgecombe County following Gordon’s arrest.
Lee’s body was found in the trunk of the vehicle, CBS 17 said. Police said it appeared she had been dead since before Gordon’s arrest on the probation violation.
Gordon’s criminal history goes back as far as the age of 16, when he was accused of attempting to sexually assault a woman. According to North Carolina Department of Public Safety records, he went to prison in 2006, at the age of 18, for attempted rape, assault and robbery.
He was paroled in June 2017, at which time he was ordered to register as a sex offender, according to the state’s sex offender registry.
The Raleigh/Wake City-County Bureau of Identification, which maintains an arrest database, shows Gordon was arrested the following month for assault of a government employee. Details and the final disposition of that case were not immediately available.
Gordon was arrested again in April 2019 for failing to report a new address as a sex offender. He was charged in August 2019 with a felony probation violation, CCBI records show.