HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) — Three people have been murdered in Huntersville and the accused gunmen was discovered dead in one of the victim’s homes. Huntersville Police said Michael Matocha, 21, killed three men whose bodies were found over the last three days.
The first body was discovered on Tuesday, June 1, with the last body being found on Thursday, but Huntersville Police said they believe all three men were murdered on the same night.
This crime marks the first triple homicide to happen in Huntersville and police are calling it a tragic but isolated incident. The homicide investigation started Tuesday afternoon when police were asked to do a welfare check on Caldwell State Road.
Michael Eugene Elliot, 58, was found dead in his home with multiple gunshot wounds. The following day, the body of a second victim, Kendrick Knight, 26, was found shot and stabbed to death in a nearby wooded area.
On Thursday, police found the third victim, Phillip Jewell, 41, in a home in the same neighborhood. Inside that same house detectives also located the body of the suspect – Michael Matocha, who police believe shot and killed himself.
FOX 46 spoke with a neighbor of Philip Jewell who said he was concerned when he had not seen the 41-year-old leave his house for a couple of days.
“The next morning the door was still open. I went over and beat on the door and couldn’t get nobody to come to do the door. I went over three times and finally I called our landlady and she said she had a phone number for him and she called me back and said, ‘I can’t get him to answer the phone,’ and I said, ‘Well you need to get somebody down here to check on him, because there is something wrong, I know there is,'” Normal Ford said, who called 911 and alerted Huntersville Police.
FOX 46 asked Huntersville Police if they are looking for any other potential victims. Investigators said they believe everyone involved has been located.
FOX 46 was able to speak with one of the victims’ sons who said it’s been an extremely tough time for the family. Justin Elliot, the son of Michael Elliot, said his family is leaning on each other and their faith during this difficult time.
Justin told FOX 46 he went to visit his father this week because they were going to work on his father’s truck together. He said when he arrived to his father’s home, around 2 p.m. on Tuesday, he immediately knew something was wrong because the curtains were drawn and his dad would usually be sitting outside on the porch.
The family still wants to know what exactly happened and Justin knows the memory of what he witnessed will never go away.
“I was the first one who had seen him. I was the one who called the cops when I found my dad lying there. It’s just evil. It’s just evil. There’s no reason for it,” Justin said to FOX 46 as he held back tears.
Justin told FOX 46 the three victims, including his father, did know each other, and investigators haven’t told him an official motive for the crime at this time.