The Richmond County Sheriff’s Office has arrested two men charged with the murder of Norman General Store owner, Michael Leverne Collins Sr., 53, who was killed during a robbery overnight Monday, according to Sheriff James Clemmons Jr.
Deputies responded to the scene at 12:24 a.m. Tuesday after receiving a call from a family member. The deputies found the store owner dead, the sheriff said.
“We have two suspects in custody and both have been charged,” said Clemmons on Tuesday afternoon.
Both men have extensive criminal records and have spent time in state prison.
Alexander Ingram, 61, of Jackson Springs, N.C., has been charged with robbery with a dangerous weapon and murder, the sheriff said. Henry Thomas Ingram, 50, of Candor, has also been charged with robbery with a dangerous weapon and murder, the sheriff said. According to Clemmons, the men are cousins and are being held at the Richmond County Jail with no bond.
Clemmons declined to say how Collins died, and said the body would be sent to the North Carolina Medical Examiner’s office at Chapel Hill to determine the cause of death.
Norman Mayor Kenneth Broadway was shocked to receive the news of Collins’ murder.
“He was a fixture in town and he and his family have been in Norman forever,” said Broadway. “We were all friends. This is very emotional. To me, he was always courteous. We’re all going to miss him. It’s a sad day for Norman.”
Broadway said he spent a moment with Collins’ wife, who is grieving with her two children.
“I’m hoping this community rallies around the family and if they need anything they know we’ll help,” said Broadway.
According to Broadway, the Norman General Store is the oldest operating store in Norman and is set to be recognized at Norman’s 100th year celebration next year. Broadway said the store has been operated for around 60 years.
Gary Brown owns Matt’s Convenience store across the street from the Norman General Store. Brown said he knew Collins as an acquaintance.
“It’s very sad that that would happen in this world we live in today,” said Brown.
Brown said he plans to speak to the sheriff about increasing law enforcement presence in the Norman area.
Alexander Ingram’s criminal record dates back to 1978, according to North Carolina Department of Correction records, when he was convicted of a misdemeanor assault with a deadly weapon and felony robbery with a deadly weapon, for which he served four years in a state prison in Scotland County. In 1996, he was convicted of maintaining a place for a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia in Montgomery County. Later that year Alexander Ingram was convicted of possession of a firearm by a felon and assault on a policeman, as well as possession of a schedule II substance in Montgomery County, records show. In 2002, he was convicted of possession of a schedule II substance in Richmond County. In 2006, he served probation in Richmond County for fraud. In 2009, he served probation in Montgomery County for larceny and second degree trespassing, according to DOC records.
Henry T. Ingram’s record dates back to 1982, when he was convicted of larceny in Moore County, according to his NCDOC records. He was convicted of non-support in 1983 in Moore County, and was convicted of forgery in 1985 in Richmond County, where he served probation. In late 1985, he was convicted of forgery and uttering in Moore County. He was also convicted of assault with a deadly weapon, inflicting serious injury and a misdemeanor breaking and entering in Montgomery County, records show. In 1987, he was convicted of a felony breaking and entering and larceny in Montgomery County, where he spent two years in prison. In 1990, he was convicted of larceny, and served probation in Montgomery County. In 1991 he was convicted of felony breaking and entering and spent two years in prison. In 1992, he was convicted of breaking and entering and larceny, and unauthorized use of motor conveyance. In 1993, he was convicted of trafficking a schedule II substance in Moore County, and spent three years in prison, according to DOC records. In 2004, he was convicted of assault on a female and misdemeanor breaking and entering in Montgomery County, where he served three months. Records also show that Henry T. Ingram was convicted of assault on a female three other times, as well as multiple convictions of driving with a revoked license, second degree kidnapping and other misdemeanor drug paraphernalia possessions.
— Staff Writer Dawn M. Kurry can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 15, or by email at email@example.com.