Woman's Body Discovered at Abandoned Home in Robeson County, Where 3 Women Found Dead Year Earlier
Rita Maynor was 63 years old.
The severely decomposed body of a woman was found in an abandoned home in the same North Carolina county where three other women were found dead under mysterious circumstances a year earlier.
The family of Rita Maynor knew something was wrong when several days had passed since they had heard from the mother of four and grandmother, they said.
“My sister had last seen her on July 3,” Maynor's son, Delton Bryant, said. “She usually stays in touch with her, or calls her sister. But nobody had heard anything from her.”
Maynor, 63, had a history of drug and alcohol use, and would sometimes spend days partying with friends, but she never lost contact with her family, they said.
“That’s not like mama; mama calls,” Bryant told InsideEdition.com.
Maynor’s family went to Pembroke Police in Robeson County on July 7 to report their mother missing.
Authorities found Maynor’s body the following day in a vacant and unfinished home off Pine Street. The house’s windows were boarded up, but the door was open when officials discovered Maynor’s remains.
Medical and dental records had to be used to help identify the decomposed body.
“I don’t understand that,” Bryant said. “Three, four days had passed.”
It was not immediately clear how Maynor died.
Investigators reportedly do not suspect foul play in her death, but have appealed to the public to help establish a timeline of Maynor’s last movements.
“Somebody was there, somebody knows what happened,” Bryant said.
Unsatisfied with the answers they were receiving from officials, Maynor’s family went to the home in which her body was discovered and said they found an unsecured scene they were able to walk into.
“We wanted to go in there to see for ourselves,” Maynor’s daughter, Rita Bryant, told InsideEdition.com.
Delton Bryant streamed on Facebook Live as he, his sister and other devastated loved ones slowly moved through the small home they said their mother was found in.
He pointed to a dark stain in the dirt, where a floor should have been laid, saying that was where her body had been discovered, and panned to heavy-duty paper used in construction, which he claimed detectives told them had covered her body.
A pair of shoes the family said they recognized to be Maynor’s were strewn across the floor, and the family could be heard gasping as they spotted stains on the unfinished walls and pipes they believed to be blood.
“How can you leave all that behind?” Delton Bryant said. “Whether it was hers or not … it’s an investigation.”
Investigators have not released any details surrounding the condition of the home where Maynor was found. Pembroke Police have not responded to InsideEdition.com’s request for comment.
“She is somebody’s daughter, mother, niece, aunt — I want justice for my mother,” Rita Bryant said. “I think about it day and night: What were my mom’s last words? What happened to her? What was she crying out for? Why did they do her like this? She didn’t deserve it.”
Pembroke Police have reportedly notified the FBI of Maynor’s death to see if there could be any connection to the deaths of Christina Bennett, Rhonda Jones and Megan Oxendine, whose bodies were found blocks apart in the matter of six weeks last year in Lumberton, another Robeson County city.
“The FBI is aware of a death investigation being conducted by the Pembroke Police Department,” an FBI spokeswoman told InsideEdition.com.
Bennett and Jones were found dead 50 yards apart from each other on April 18, 2017. Bennett was found inside a home on Peachtree Street. Jones was found in a garbage container with the address of the home in which Bennett was found painted on its side, according to court documents.
Oxendine’s body was found six weeks later on June 3.
Oxendine was discovered about two city blocks from where Bennett and Jones were found, and several weeks after she had spoken on the news about Jones’s death.
“I ain’t never seen her act out or nothing,” Oxendine said in the news clip. “She’s just quiet. She didn’t really mess with too many people.... I don’t understand how somebody could do somebody’s child, mother, niece, like that.”
The causes of the three women’s deaths and details of their autopsy reports remain unknown.
“The medical examiner’s office has reached the point where they are prepared to release and make public their findings as to their examination of these deaths,” read court documents filed this past February by a state investigator with the North Carolina Judicial Branch obtained by InsideEdition.com.
“Contained within these findings is information relative to controlled substances found during toxicology analysis,” the court document noted.
Cobey Culton, press assistant for the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, told InsideEdition.com those findings will be released when the cases are finalized. No estimated date of completion could be provided.
In speaking about her mother, Rita Bryant reflected on the deaths of the women who made headlines a year before, saying: “They are still human beings. Don’t treat them like they’re nobody.”
For more of Inside Edition's InDepth look at the deaths in Lumberton, click here.
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