Man arrested in 1984 murders of mother, 10-year-old son in Charlotte
According to the CMPD, years of extensive forensic testing and evidence examination led to investigators identifying the suspect.
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) – An arrest has been made in the nearly 40-year-old double murder of a mother and son in Charlotte’s Hidden Valley neighborhood, authorities say.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police announced the arrest of James Thomas Pratt, 60, in connection with the murders of Sarah Mobley Hall, 27, and her 10-year-old son, Derrick Dion Mobley.
CMPD Capt. Joel McNelly said officers were called to a home on Ventura Way in the Hidden Valley neighborhood on March 14, 1984. When they arrived, they found the door was ajar and a foul odor coming from inside.
According to McNelly, the victims were found assaulted and strangled to death. He described it as “a really horrific crime scene.”
Hall was described by authorities as a single mother who worked with special needs kids, one of whom was her 10-year-old son.
To put the time of the investigation into context, McNelly said if a rookie officer had started on the day of the crime, that person would have been retired for 10 years now.
According to the CMPD, years of extensive forensic testing and evidence examination led to investigators identifying Pratt as the suspect.
On Feb. 1, Pratt was arrested at a hotel without incident in York County, S.C., police said. He was extradited back to Mecklenburg County and is currently in jail under no bond, charged with two counts of first-degree murder, according to the CMPD.
According to investigators, there was a friendly relationship between Hall and Pratt. The exact nature of the relationship was not disclosed to maintain investigative integrity, CMPD officials said.
McNelly said that both of Hall’s parents have since died, with no news of what happened to their daughter.
Hall’s siblings were notified of Pratt’s arrest, as was Derrick’s father, “and they were absolutely elated,” McNelly said at Thursday morning’s press conference.
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