Car, remains found in NC Lake may be linked to 2006 missing person, police say

WINSTON-SALEM, NC (WGHP) – North Carolina police have established a possible link in a missing person case dating back more than 15 years.

Dedrick Bernard Smith, 26, was reported missing Oct. 4, 2006, according to the Winston-Salem Police Department. His last known contact with anyone was earlier in the day, during a phone conversation.

“The investigation into Mr. Smith’s disappearance has continued over the years, but no viable leads relating to his disappearance have been developed,” police wrote in an incident alert this week.

That all changed on Friday, when Winston-Salem police were contacted by a search and recovery dive team known as ‘Adventures With Purpose’, who said they may have found what thought she was Smith’s 1993 Pontiac Grand Am. The car, which was being driven by Smith at the time of his disappearance, was submerged in Lake Winston.

Winston-Salem detectives and divers with Adventures With Purpose worked together to remove the Pontiac from Winston Lake on the morning of Saturday, April 2. The Pontiac has been positively identified as the car that had been driven by Smith.

Remains were also found in the vehicle. Authorities will work to identify the remains and determine the cause of death in the coming days, police said.

Smith’s next of kin has been notified of the discovery.

Anyone with information that may help the investigation is asked to call the Winston-Salem Police Department at (336) 773-7700 or (336) 728-3904 (in Spanish), or contact Crime Stoppers at (336) 727-2800. The Text-A-Tip program can be contacted at (336) 276-1717 for those wishing to send tips, photos and videos to the Winston-Salem Police Department.


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