Text message leads to man’s arrest in connection with ex-wife’s murder

Rodney Roberto Wallace, Toney Ann Johnson.

Rodney Roberto Wallace, Toney Ann Johnson.

ROWAN COUNTY, N.C. –A man wanted by police after his ex-wife’s body was found in Rowan County was arrested Thursday.

It was all thanks to a text message.

Rodney Roberto Wallace, 47, was arrested by police in Wrightsville Beach.

According to WSOC, the search for Wallace began after the body of his ex-wife Toney Ann Johnson was found between two homes on 4th Street in Spencer around 9 a.m. on Wednesday.

Wallace apparently fled the area and was sitting in his car with a “girlfriend” near the police station in Wrightsville when the woman got a text from her mother letting her know that he was suspected of beating and killing another woman.

Police say the woman jumped from the car and screamed that she needed help because she was with a murderer.

(Credit: WSOC)

(Credit: WSOC)

Wallace was arrested immediately and charged with first degree murder and two counts of probation violation.

No bond was given for the murder charge and $25,000 was given each for the probation charges.

The couple divorced in January, according to court records.

Police confirmed there had been violence between Johnson and Wallace, and that Johnson had sought help.

“The first thing that you do is you realize, number one that it’s not your fault, number two you look for resources,” said Renee Bradshaw, the Executive Director for the Family Crisis Council in Rowan County. “Pick up that phone, call that number, and talk to someone.

The Family Crisis Council helps those who are suffering at the hands of an abuser.

Bradshaw said that three women died last year in Rowan County in domestic violence situations, and there 62 deaths statewide.

The Family Crisis Council operates a crisis line that is staffed 24 hours a day. Those needing help can call 704-636-4718.

Source: WSOC

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