Wilkes Sheriff Chris Shew said foul play is suspected in connection with a body found on private property in the White Plains Road section of the Roaring River community Monday.

Shew said the death is being investigated as a homicide and that there is a suspect.

Wilkes Sheriff’s Office and Wilkesboro Police Department officers, acting on information obtained in an investigation, found the body about 1 p.m. and were on the scene until late Monday night, he added. The State Bureau of Investigation also was there.

The body had been exposed to the weather and appears to have been at the location where it was found for several days, “probably for over a week,” said the sheriff.

He said there was no obvious cause of death, but added that investigators didn’t attempt to examine the body to determine a gender or other information before it was transported to a forensic pathologist for an autopsy.

Shew declined to comment on any possible connection between the body and any reports of missing people. He said the investigation is continuing.

The Alleghany News reported this week that a missing person’s report was filed last week with the Sparta Police Department for Kadejuia Nicole Hamilton, 26, a former Wilkes County resident who most recently lived at Crestview Apartments in Sparta. The newspaper quoted Sparta Police Chief Bob Lane as saying Hamilton’s whereabouts are under investigation.

According to Hamilton’s Facebook page, she was reportedly last seen by friends on Oct. 10. Hamilton is a 2012 graduate of Wilkes Central High School and is believed to have been living in North Wilkesboro until about five months ago.

Anyone with information about Hamilton’s whereabouts or matters surrounding her disappearance is asked to call the Sparta Police Department at 336-372-4252.

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