BAKERSVILLE, N. C. – A Red Hill man will spend life in prison for the murders of two Western North Carolina women.
Cecil Scott Byrd, age 43, of Bad Creek Road, was transported by Mitchell County Deputies to Raleigh Central Prison to begin serving two life sentences, without the possibility of parole, on Friday, March 17, 2017 after pleading guilty in court to two felony first degree murder charges.
The Mitchell County Sheriff’s Office charged Byrd on November 5, 2015 with two counts of felony murder in connection to the deaths of Lisa Ann Robbins, age 49, and Sarah Denise Riddle, age 45 after law enforcement found burnt human remains of one of the bodies off North NC226 Highway around Iron Mountain in the Buladean community. Reports state that Robbins went missing from her Mitchell County home on October 23, 2015 and that Riddle went missing in McDowell County on November 1, 2015.
The remains of only one of the missing women were ever found by law enforcement. After re-interviewing Byrd, law enforcement is now searching for the second body after he provided information about the whereabouts of her remains.
Scott Byrd’s mother, also charged in connection to the crimes, is expected to make her appearance in Mitchell County Superior Court on Wednesday, April 19, 2017. Pasty Garland Byrd, age 64, also of Bad Creek Road, was charged with one count of accessory after the fact to felony murder for allegedly helping her son dispose of the women’s bodies. In court, her attorney has asked to be released from her representation due to health reasons, and she was appointed a new attorney by the judge.
The investigation is ongoing as law enforcement officers search areas of Mitchell County for additional human remains, and depending on the evidence found, additional charges could be filed against additional suspects. Mrs. Byrd, along with all suspects that are charged with a crime, is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.