Warrant: Welfare check, fraud charge in Myrtle Beach led to arrest in N.C. woman’s murder

Published: Jan. 23, 2023 at 9:25 AM EST|Updated: Jan. 23, 2023 at 1:02 PM EST
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MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) – Newly obtained warrants show the Myrtle Beach man charged with the kidnapping and murder of a North Carolina woman was taken into custody due to a welfare check.

According to arrest warrants obtained by WMBF News, Myrtle Beach police officers were called to Culbertson Ave for a welfare check. When officers arrived, they found William Hicks, 26, who had an active warrant for a financial transaction card (FTC) fraud charge.

Hicks was taken to the Myrtle Beach Police Jail, at which time officers learned he was wanted in North Carolina for first-degree murder. The warrant from MBPD stated there was “probable cause to believe the defendant did commit the offense of fugitive from justice.

Hicks is charged with murder, robbery and kidnapping out of North Carolina in connection to KC Johnson’s death.

MORE COVERAGE | No bond issued for Myrtle Beach man accused of killing N.C. woman he met on social media

Johnson was reported missing on Saturday in Wilmington. An investigation by the Wilmington Police Department determined that Johnson was killed in the 1300 block of King Street on Friday.

According to a report from WMBF News sister station WECT, Wilmington police also received a call from police in Chatham County, Georgia after they discovered human remains washed up along the Savannah River. Investigators are working to determine if the remains belong to Johnson.

Police say Johnson and Hicks met recently on social media.

KC Johnson, William Hicks
KC Johnson, William Hicks(Wilmington PD, MBPD)

He appeared in court on the morning on Jan. 19 on a fugitive charge. During the hearing, Hicks waived his right to fight extradition to North Carolina. No bond was issued due to the murder charge.

The Wilmington Police Department has 20 days to come down to Horry County and pick up Hicks and take him back to North Carolina where he will face murder, kidnapping and robbery charges there.

Hicks was booked into the J. Reuben Long Detention Center in Conway after his bond hearing.

Public records also detail his criminal history, which dates back nearly five years.

He was charged with first-degree assault and battery in October 2018, ill-treatment of animals in November 2018 and second-degree burglary in December 2018.

Hicks ultimately pleaded guilty to the assault and burglary charge in 2020 while the animal-related charge was dismissed. He was sentenced to three years probation.

Another arrest came in January 2022 on a separate assault case that has since been rescheduled.

“The Wilmington Police Department sends our condolences to the victim’s family and friends during this difficult time,” the Wilmington Police Department said in a release.

Anyone with information on the case is asked to call the Wilmington Police Department at 910-343-3609.