Escaped Inmate Named Prime Suspect in Homicide

Updated: Tuesday, August 19 2014, 07:29 PM EDT
Escaped Inmate Named Prime Suspect in Homicide story image
Investigators in Macon County release the name of the woman whose body was found inside her burned home. They also say the woman was killed, before the fire started.
Investigators say 71-year-old Day Williamson died by strangulation. They say the prime suspect is in this jail now, but had escaped.

It was Saturday, August 2nd when fire broke out at a home in the Burningtown community of Macon County. The body of a woman was found inside the home.

But Sheriff Robbie Holland says she died before the fire. "According to the medical examiner her cause of death is strangulation," says the Sheriff.

Williamson was well liked in the close-knit community. Neighbors say she was sweet and loved flowers and painting, and was a founding member of Mt. Harmony Baptist Church.

The Sheriff says the prime suspect in her death and the fire is Charles Cochran. He escaped from the Macon County Jail July 30th, but was captured at a home in Franklin about a week later.

According to Sheriff Holland, Cochran knew Day Williamson and was familiar with her house, having done work there in the past. He says through interviews with Cochran and others and evidence collected, he's confident in how and when the fire started. "At this time we're not able to release that information...and that will come out at a later date," says Sheriff Holland. He says this will be after a complete investigation is finished and presented to the District Attorneys office. "I'm confident that in coming weeks that charges will be filed against Mr. Cochran," adds the Sheriff.
Franklin Police say Cochran is also a prime suspect in a shooting in town that nearly injured a resident. Meanwhile he remains here in jail under tightened security.

By: Rex Hodge

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