Medical Examiner Issues Cause Of Death For Missing Man

The Medical Examiner's office has released the cause of death for a missing man whose body was found in icy waters in Martin County on Friday.

Officials say Christopher Jones died of asphyxiation by drowning.

The Medical Examiner's office states it still doesn't know how long Jones had been dead before he was found.

The vehicle Jones was driving was found January 1, but his body wasn't found until January 8.

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The State Bureau of Investigation is assisting with discovery of a body Friday afternoon in Martin County.

Sheriff Dan Gibbs says they found the license of Christoper Jones on the body found in the swamp.

Jones has been missing for a week.

Gibbs says the autopsy won't likely be completed until Monday.

The family of the missing man says they believe the body found in Martin County Friday is that of Christopher Jones.

His brother, Jack Jones, tells WITN News that a body was found in some woods near where the truck he was driving was found on Saturday.

Sheriff Dan Gibbs confirmed that a body was found in the woods off Highway 64.

He said the SBI is looking for any signs of foul play and they set up lights to help in that search as the sun went down.

New information from reporter Dave Marcheskie, who was on the scene, says the body was found under ice in a swamp.

Earlier Friday, two of the brothers rented a plane to fly over the area and thought they spotted "something that didn't look right."

Jack Jones says his two brothers walked back toward the swamp and saw an arm sticking out of the ice, with what appeared to be a blue sweater like his brother had on the day he disappeared.

The family of a missing Martin County man is now offering a $5,000 reward for information that leads to his return.

It's been a week since Christopher Jones was last seen when he left to pick up some items for his daughter's birthday party. The truck Jones was driving was found Saturday night along Highway 64.

Friday the man's brothers took to the air to search a 2 to 3 mile area around where the truck was found. After that they will access the situation and then go by vehicle to the area.

A Marine helicopter from Cherry Point was also brought in to help deputies search the area around Highway 64 where the truck was found.

The family asks that anyone who may have seen the pickup truck Jones was in before it was found to contact authorities. It is a white 1991 Dodge Dakota pickup truck with a black brush guard on the front grill.

If anyone has information on Jones, they should contact the Martin County Sheriff's Office.

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Martin County lawmen are searching for a missing man who was last seen Friday afternoon.

Deputies say Christopher Jones was reported missing by his family on Saturday.

Since Friday it has been a waiting game for Christopher's brothers Tommy and Jack Jones.

The Jones brothers say Christopher left around 3:30 Friday afternoon to pick up a few things for a birthday party he was throwing for his 14 year-old daughter on Saturday--but never came back.

The truck Jones was driving was found Saturday night by a Martin County Sheriff's deputy sitting on the side of Highway 64 at No. 90 Cutoff Road. That's when lawmen got involved and assembled a search team all day Sunday.

With no answers about Christopher's whereabouts, Tommy Jones is starting to worry. "We're trying to be positive, but ya know It's really sad because like we said, the scenario. The family is just distraught. We're trying to be positive, we're praying to our savior...but, it doesn't look good."

Jones was wearing a Carolina blue sweatshirt with hood and jeans. He's 5'11" tall, weighs approximately 180 pounds, and has short brown hair and blue eyes.

Anyone who has information related to the whereabouts of Christopher Jones is asked to contact the Martin County Sheriff's Office at 252-789-4500 or Martin County Crime Stoppers at 252-792-8800.

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