Man charged with murder after worker vanishes at Sampson County hog farm

North Carolina

CLINTON, N.C. (WNCN) — Sampson County authorities made a murder arrest Monday in the case of a missing man last seen in early February at a hog farm.

David “Van” Alphin, 35, was wearing coveralls and rubber work boots when he was last seen Feb. 2 at the hog farm on Elwood Road, the Sampson County Sheriff’s Office said.

Monday, deputies said Alphin, a farm laborer, was still missing, but “enough substantial evidence” had been found to charge a man in his death.

James Eric House, 35, of Clinton was charged with murder and is being held in the Sampson County Detention Center without bond.

Alphin’s family offered a $5,000 reward last month in hopes he would be found.

“We do pray the arrest begins to bring some closure to the Alphin family,” Sampson County Sheriff’s Office Lt. Marcus Smith said in a news release.

Sampson County Sheriff Jimmy Thornton said the case was a “very complex puzzle.”

Thornton thanked Sampson County residents for helping in the case.

“This has been a lengthy investigation, where investigators have suspected malice from the on-set. We are fortunate to live in a county where its citizens are willing to support and aide our investigators. Together, law enforcement and its citizenry cannot be stopped from putting an end to evil,” Thornton said in the news release.

Thornton said officials are still trying to find Alphin.

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