Carolina Murder Suspect Says He Didn't Do It

September 21, 2010 Updated Sep 21, 2010 at 4:37 PM EDT

By WKBW Programming


Carolina Murder Suspect Says He Didn't Do It

September 21, 2010 Updated Sep 21, 2010 at 4:37 PM EDT

LOCKPORT, NY ( WKBW/ WSOC ) Michael Harvey, the man arrested Monday after a manhunt led officials back to his hometown of Niagara Falls, was arraigned in Niagara County Court Tuesday afternoon.

He spoke out Tuesday saying he didn't do it, and that there is more to the story.

The man charged in the death of 23-year-old Valerie Hamilton, who was found dead on Saturday, appeared in court and waived extradition, meaning he will return to North Carolina.

Hamilton was the daughter of Concord Police Chief Merl Hamilton. Her funeral was held Tuesday afternoon at First Presbyterian Church in Concord. A candlelight vigil in her honor, organized by the Cabarrus County Chapter of Mothers of Murdered Offspring and the city of Concord, drew hundreds of people on Monday night.

Harvey was picked in connection with Hamilton's death after a tip led authorities to Stephenson Avenue in the Falls on Monday. He is the main suspect in the death of 23 year old Valerie Hamilton.

Monday night, a candlelight vigil was held near Charlotte for the 23 year old. Hamilton's father, who is also Concord North Carolina Police Chief, thanked the crowd for their support.

Hamilton was last seen leaving a Charlotte bar with Michael Harvey last Wednesday.

On Saturday, her body was discovered in a storage facility just down the street from that bar.

Monday, Harvey was found in a heroin induced sleep on a friend's couch in his hometown of Niagara Falls, New York according to an agent with the U.S. Marshall's office.

In Charlotte, an autopsy is underway to determine the cause of Hamilton's death. Harvey's friends here in Niagara Falls believe Hamilton was not murdered.

One witness to Harvey's arrest told Eyewitness News, "He said that they were out at the bar and they were doing some drugs. They woke up and she was dead. He was all messed up, so he hid the body."

Chief Rodney Monroe of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police stated, "When we recovered the body, the body was wrapped - so as not to disturb that and the materials that the body was wrapped in. We presented the materials and the body to the medical examiner's office."