ALBEMARLE, NC (WBTV) - An arrest has been made in the disappearance of a 25-year-old Albemarle woman who deputies fear is dead.
“In my 27 years I’ve never been involved in an investigation like this…not in this county," said Stanly County Sheriff Jeff Crisco.
Sasha Lee Naylor was reported missing in Stanly County Thursday. A Silver Alert was issued a short time later for Naylor, who deputies say was reportedly pregnant with a February due date.
The Stanly Co Sheriff says Joseph Lee Rhodes is being charged with 1st degree murder of Sasha Lee Naylor and the murder of the 25-year-old’s unborn child. Authorities have not yet found her body.
As Rhodes was led out of the Stanly County Sheriff’s Office he told WBTV that “he didn’t do nothing” and was being falsely accused of the crime.
Officials asked the community to be on the lookout for Naylor. She was believed to be suffering from dementia or some other cognitive impairment.
Naylor was last seen alive on Kates Drive in Albemarle and believed to be heading in the direction of West Virginia or Ohio.
Her last contact was at the Community Inn in Albemarle on Aug. 21, 2018, officials say.
She was last known to be driving a brown or gold 1998 Ford Tempo with right side damage. That car was found burning in Marshville in August, 2018.
Anyone with additional information is asked to call the Stanly County Sheriff’s Office at 704-986-3700.
Sheriff Crisco said that Naylor’s family lives in Ohio. He is hopeful that the arrest will help them with closure.
“The main thing I hope with this is that there’s closure. I know that’s the main thing they’ve been seeking this whole time. I hope this does give them some closure," Sheriff Crisco added.