Murder charges filed after man found dead in Lumberton yard

James Matthew McDougald (Photo provided by police)

Police found 48-year-old James Bethea dead in a yard on Peachtree Street in Lumberton on Wednesday night, according to Captain Terry Parker with Lumberton Police.

Parker said Bethea was taken to Southeastern Regional Medical Center, where he was officially pronounced dead.

He added Bethea’s cause of death will be determined by an autopsy.

James Matthew McDougald, 37, is charged with first degree murder in Bethea’s death.

McDougald also faces charges of possession of a firearm by convicted felon and possession with intent to sell and deliver marijuana.

He has no bond on the murder charge and $100,000 bond on the other charges, according to police.

McDougald is being held in the Robeson County Detention Center.

The Lumberton Police Department is being assisted in this investigation by the Robeson County District Attorney’s Investigator Mr. Erich Hackney and the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation.

Anyone with information concerning this case should contact Detectives Jennifer White or Evan Whitley at the Lumberton Police Department 910-671-3845.

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