Boyfriend of Allisha Watts charged with murder, denied bond in court appearance

James Dunmore is accused of killing Allisha Watts on July 16, more than a month before her body was found.
James Dunmore is charged with murder in connection with the discovery of the body of missing Moore County woman Allisha Watts.
Published: Aug. 28, 2023 at 6:52 AM EDT
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MONTGOMERY COUNTY, N.C. (WBTV) - The man accused of killing a North Carolina woman appeared in court on Monday, where he was denied bond and given a court-appointed attorney.

James Dunmore is charged with the murder of his girlfriend, Allisha Watts, whose body was found behind a Montgomery County cemetery last week.

Watts, who was from Moore County, was last seen alive on July 16 at Dunmore’s Charlotte home.

Outside the courthouse, family friend Brenda Smith shared a message from Watts’ mother.

“If he is the one that did it, she said that he deserved to have his eyes closed, just like her daughter has closed and never will be open again,” she said. “She would like to thank everybody for helping out and being day one with us.”

Investigators and search parties worked for more than a month to bring her home before her remains were found.

A search warrant revealed police believe Dunmore killed Watts the day she was last seen. Another warrant also revealed that Dunmore was the victim of an apparent suicide attempt on July 18, when he was found in Watts’ vehicle at an Anson County DMV.

“This is not the outcome that we had been hoping for,” Montgomery County Sheriff Pete Herron said last week. “But by finding Allisha today, it can bring some closure. I hope and I pray it will bring some closure to family and friends moving forward.”

On Sunday, family and friends of Watts held a rally outside the Montgomery County Jail in hopes of keeping Dunmore locked up without bond.

“There should not be a bond issued,” her friend, Vincent Gordon said last week. “That gentleman should remain locked up so he doesn’t endanger anyone else’s lives or cause any more harm to any one of the families or friends of Allisha.”

Dunmore’s next court date was set for Sept. 14.

Related: Allisha Watts’ family seeks ‘no bond’ for James Dunmore’s murder charges