The murder trial against Eric Campbell continues Tuesday at a courtroom in Granville County, North Carolina. Prosecutors say he helped his father Edward Campbell kill a local couple on December 31, 2014. Victims Jerome Faulkner, 73, Dora Faulkner, 62, and their two dogs were stabbed to death. Their house was burnt down. This was all part of an alleged crime spree from Texas to West Virginia.
Son Eric, now 23, must face the accusation alone because the elder Campbell killed himself while in custody as a pre-trial inmate at Central Prison in Raleigh, North Carolina.
The defense is claiming that Eric thought that the Faulkners were only going to get robbed, not murdered. Eric was too afraid to stop the killings, having been abused by Edward Campbell for years, the defense said.
The prosecution argues that the defendant was culpable. They claim that Eric got money to bond Edward out of a Texas jail and helped his father during the crime spree.
Much of Monday’s testimony focused on items found in the vehicles that Eric and Edward Campbell drove from North Carolina to West Virginia after the alleged crimes. Detective Doug McPhee of the Granville County Police Department talked about the red pickup truck Edward was in, said to be stolen from the Faulkners, and the stolen white suburban that Eric drove. Police arrested the men after a traffic stop where Eric was pulled over. Edward pulled up behind them and fired at officers, but both men were apprehended. In the pickup truck, officers found the Faulkners’ bodies covered by a mattress.
Authorities recovered bleach and chemical spray from the red truck. Also found in the vehicles were pills, shoes, and other items from that police believed to be taken from the Faulkners’ home. Officers also recovered weapons including a loaded gun, a sword, and a crossbow.
Eric Campbell, who faces two counts first-degree murder, could get the death penalty if convicted. He has also been charged with first-degree burglary, robbery with a dangerous weapon, second-degree arson, and two counts of cruelty to animals.
Ronn Blitzer contributed to this article.
[Featured post screengrab via WRAL; Campbell on left]