Autopsy for body found set for Tuesday; investigation into May 5 - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

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Autopsy for body found set for Tuesday; investigation into May 5 murder and kidnapping continues

Image of the creek off New Bridge Road, near where the body was found. (Source: Erin Edwards) Image of the creek off New Bridge Road, near where the body was found. (Source: Erin Edwards)
(Source: Marboro County Sheriff's Office/SLED) (Source: Marboro County Sheriff's Office/SLED)
Iyana Lowery (Source: Family of Iyana Lowery) Iyana Lowery (Source: Family of Iyana Lowery)
Ella Lowery (Source: Marlboro County Sheriff's Office/WMBF) Ella Lowery (Source: Marlboro County Sheriff's Office/WMBF)
BENNETTSVILLE, SC (WCSC) -

MARLBORO COUNTY, SC (WMBF/WCSC) - A body was found Sunday morning after authorities received information that led investigators to a remote area near McColl, the Marlboro County Sheriff's Office announced Sunday. The coroner confirmed an autopsy will be performed Tuesday.

"The body was recovered in an area off New Bridge Road," according to Marlboro County Sheriff Charles Lemon. "An autopsy and forensic tests will be needed to make a positive identification."

An aquatic investigation and recovery was out on New Bridge Road in McColl Monday. Dive teams were searching the pond where body was found Sunday.

Coroner Tim Brown said the autopsy will be conducted Tuesday at the Medical University of South Carolina.

Jejauncey Fernando Harrington, 32, from Bennettsville, has been arrested and charged in connection with the May 5 death of Ella Lowery and the disappearance of her eight-year-old daughter, the Marlboro County Sheriff's Office announced Saturday.

A neighbor told WMBF News reporter Erin Edwards she tipped off police after she saw a suspicious car on her security camera on May 5th. The neighbor said her camera caught a man sitting in his car across from their house Friday night. She said he drove away with no lights on after sitting there for three hours. The neighbor called police Saturday night, and police reviewed the footage.

Authorities said Ella Lowery was found dead in the Bennettsville home she shared with her daughter May 5. The girl has not been seen since despite a massive search by state police and the FBI.

Harrington, 32, was charged with Murder and Possession of a Weapon during a Violent Crime in connection with the May 5th stabbing death of Ella Lowery of Bennettsville. Harrington has also been charged with Kidnapping and Possession of a Weapon during a Violent Crime in connection with the disappearance of Lowery's daughter, Iyana.

"This is a major break in this case, but there is still much work to do as the investigation is ongoing," according to Marlboro County Sheriff Charles Lemon. "We are keeping out focus on finding Iyana Lowery and bringing her home to her family. That's a continuing priority for everyone that's been a part of this investigation."

Harrington was booked and is being detained at the Marlboro County Detention Center.

Sheriff Lemon said the charge of Murder is a felony, which carries a penalty upon conviction of death or a minimum of 30 years to life in prison. The charge of Possession of a Weapon during a Violent Crime carries a penalty upon conviction of five years in addition to the penalty for the principal crime. The charge of Kidnapping carries a penalty upon conviction of up to 30 years in prison.

A $10,000 reward was being offered for information leading to the recovery of Iyana Lowery.

Saturday's arrest came after charges were dropped against another man arrested last week and charged in Lowery's murder. All charges against 36-year-old Dwayne Jermaine Bright were dropped Friday, according to a news release sent by the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division on behalf of the Marlboro County Sheriff’s Office.

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