What is Going on in This Town? Part Two

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Return to Robeson County

Hey, y’all, and welcome to Southern Macabre! I’m your host, Aeryn, and I’m so excited to have you join me for True Crime Friday! Today we’re going to return to Robeson County, North Carolina because there is so much going on there that I just wasn’t ready to pack up and leave. Today I’m going to tell you about cold cases and true crime.

I’m going to warn you, today’s episode may be a bit graphic for some listeners, but I feel the details are important. Also, here in the south, it’s a sign of respect to put a Mr. or Mrs. in front of a person’s first name. That’s important because of the people I’m talking about in this episode and most of my listeners ain’t from around here.

Also, I’m going to stay out of Robeson County for a while after today. I’ve become pretty obsessed with what’s going on there and I could talk about it every week. However, this is Southern Macabre not Robeson County Macabre. Or more appropriately, What the Heck is Going on in Robeson County?. I don’t know what case or cases I’m going to do next, but it probably won’t be in North Carolina either.

After speaking to a Lumberton local, I learned of two other women who were found naked and murdered in East Lumberton, but in 2003 instead of 2017.

Lisa Hardin was thirty-six years old when she initially went missing. Her mother said that she knew something was wrong when Lisa didn’t come home. Her body was found in the woods on the east side of Lumberton, around the same area as Kristin, Rhonda, and Megan. Her orange Harley Davidson t-shirt was pulled up around her neck and her underwear was twisted around her ankle. She had been strangled.

Four months earlier, police found twenty-three-year-old Michelle Ann Driggers’s naked, decomposed body in a cemetery in east Lumberton. Less than a mile from where Lisa would later be found.

Also, like Rhonda and Megan, they were both members of the Lumbee tribe. I tried to find where they were murdered, to see if it was that same block, but I couldn’t find an exact location for Lisa or Michelle.

Sadly, none of these cases have been solved yet. I ask that if you are listening today, please pray for the victim’s families. I have spoken to some of them and you can hear the pain in their voices so strongly that you can almost feel it yourself.

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I learned of this case last week and it’s a big part of why I wanted to talk about Robeson County, and Lumberton, again this week. Julian Pierce was one of thirteen children in his family and he was born in 1946. He graduated high school at the age of sixteen and went to the University of North Carolina at Pembroke. He had a full scholarship and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry. So, he was an extremely smart man.

He started his career at the Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company in Newport News, Virginia. He later worked for the Navy shipyard in Norfolk, Virginia as a chemist. There he developed an award-winning chemical process for decontamination of nuclear reactors. So, Mr. Julian wasn’t just smart – he was a genius!

After working as a chemist for several years, he attended the law school at North Carolina Central University School of Law in Durham, North Carolina. After graduating in 1976, he accepted a position with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission in Washington, D.C. While working there, Mr. Julian attended Georgetown School of Law to earn his Master of Laws in Taxation.

In 1978, he returned to North Carolina to become the first director of the Lumbee River Legal Services, a poverty law office in Pembroke. He helped merge the tri-school board into one school board so every school got equal funding. He was also part of the group who attempted to get the Lumbee tribe fed

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