Arrest made in double murders

Published 12:00 am Monday, June 28, 2004

Uniontown resident Charlie Bennett has been charged with capital murder in connection to the shooting deaths of two men whose bodies were discovered June 19 in a Perry County soybean field.

The Alabama Bureau of Investigation, along with Perry County Sheriff’s Department and Uniontown police, apprehended Bennett sometime late Thursday night.

According to Fourth Judicial Circuit District Attorney Ed Greene, the suspect has been charged with two counts of murder in a robbery.

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“The officers worked on this case all night long last night,” Greene said Friday. “This was a shocking thing for the community of Uniontown.”

Local farmer Tom Belcher found the bodies of Lawrence Alvin Smith, 25, and Kenneth Dixie, 37, in his soybean field on County Road 53, less than a mile from the county line.

Belcher told police he went to check on his crops shortly before 5 p.m. on June 19 and noticed a car in the field.

Both bodies were inside the car at the edge of the field near the road. It appeared the men died of gun shot wounds to their heads.

During their preliminary investigation, police where hesitant to say the case was a homicide until the Alabama Department of Forensics Sciences could determine a cause of death.

However, Uniontown officials called in the ABI to help in the investigation soon after the bodies were found.

“My hats are off to the law enforcement officers involved in this case,” Greene said. “They worked together in a timely manner to solve this crime and made an excellent arrest.”

Bennett was taken to the Hale County Jail, Greene said, where he is currently being held without bond.

The suspect is set to appear before the magistrate Monday morning.