UPDATE: Deputies identify man wanted for chicken plant parking lot murder

Antwan Wright is wanted for murder by the Duplin County Sheriff's Office.
Antwan Wright is wanted for murder by the Duplin County Sheriff's Office.(WITN)
Published: Nov. 25, 2020 at 6:49 AM EST|Updated: Nov. 30, 2020 at 1:32 PM EST
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DUPLIN COUNTY, N.C. (WITN) - Deputies have identified a man they say is wanted for shooting another man in the parking lot of a chicken plant last week.

The Duplin County Sheriff’s Office says that Antwan Wright, 34, of Wayne County, should be considered armed and dangerous.

Deputies say Wright shot and killed Darius Atkins, 29, of Wayne County, in the parking lot of the House of Raeford Plant on U.S. 117, north of Rose Hill.

A warrant for a charge of murder has been taken out against Wright.

If you know where Wright is call the sheriff’s office at 910-296-2150.

The sheriff’s office is offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to an arrest and conviction in the case.

Previous Story:

An employee of a Duplin County chicken processing plant is dead and the sheriff says they have identified a potential suspect in the shooting.

Sheriff Blake Wallace tells WITN News that deputies were called around 5:15 a.m. to the House of Raeford plant on U.S. 117, north of Rose Hill, to find the victim shot multiple times.

“EMS attempted to transport the victim, but he expired prior to reaching the hospital,” said Wallace. “We immediately began an investigation. It appears that there was a past history between the victim and the suspect.”

Wallace added the victim, whose name they haven’t released, lived outside of Duplin County.

Early morning shooting at House of Raeford Farms Plant in Rose Hill-Magnolia area of Duplin County. One person is dead and the Sheriff’s Office tells me a suspect has been identified. More information on WITN-TV throughout the day.

Posted by Liam Collins WITN on Wednesday, November 25, 2020

“It’s a shock to me that something like that could occur,” said Mary Lanier of Duplin County. “Even though we’re going through this pandemic, it’s a sad thing that someone have to lose their life today before Thanksgiving.”

The sheriff said the potential suspect appears to have no association with the plant and that it was not a random shooting. But, there is not active threat to the small community shocked by the early-morning shooting.

“God knows the heart of men,” said Washington Coleman, Jr. of Duplin County. “Many times people have envy, malice and strife in their heart against their fellow man, and they’ll go shoot them or the devil shoot them.”

The plant is a major employer in Duplin County, employing nearly 6,000 people, according to the company.

“That’s where everybody’s go-to is,” said Jo Clark of Duplin County, who has family who works at the plant. “They employ so many people. It’s the livelihood of Duplin County.”

No other workers were in harm’s way, the sheriff said, and they are still speaking to people who were in the area trying to locate potential witnesses.

Sheriff Blake Wallace is asking anyone with information on the shooting to call the Duplin County Sheriff’s Office (910) 296-2150.


The Duplin County Sheriff’s Office says one person has died after a shooting early Wednesday morning at the House of Raeford chicken plant in Rose Hill.

A spokesperson for House of Raeford says an employee was killed shortly after 5 a.m. in the parking lot of the processing plant.

Officials say they have identified the victim and suspect, but their names have not been released.

As of 8:45 a.m., law enforcement is currently on scene investigating.

This is a developing story. Stay with WITN News both on air and online for more information.

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