Suspect arrested in connection with disappearance of Belmont man

BELMONT, N.C. — A man is behind bars in connection with the disappearance of missing Belmont man Andy Tench.

D’Shaun Robinson, 31, has been arrested for identity theft and failure to report a death/concealing a death, according to court records.

Family members said Robinson’s arrest was in connection with 31-year-old Tench’s disappearance.

According to an affidavit obtained by Channel 9, investigators found that Tench’s debit card had been used at a Target after his reported disappearance.

The investigators went to the store and got surveillance video of the transaction and then made contact with Robinson.

The affidavit said investigators found Tench’s phone inside Robinson’s residence.

Gaston County court records said Robinson admitted to meeting Tench at The Bar at 316 in Dilworth on March 25 before he was reported missing. Robinson told investigators that Tench died and he “panicked” before hiding his body in a dumpster behind a Charlotte hotel.

“He’s a grown man, but you still feel like you failed him, you (were) supposed to be there to protect him,” said Natasha Newman, Tench’s sister.

She now must refer to her brother in the past tense.

“I just want people to know that Andy was generous,” she said. “He had a heart of gold, even if someone didn’t have that heart of gold back for him.”

Police, family, and friends have been searching for him for nearly three weeks.

But earlier Thursday, Charlotte-Mecklenburg police informed family members that officers arrested the suspect in his disappearance with the charge of concealment of death.

“We, of course, expect the worst, and hope for the best,” Newman said. “We didn’t think this was going to be the outcome.”

Newman said they want to bring him home so he can have a proper burial.

Family members said they don’t yet feel the charges fully fit the crime.

“No, I don’t, so, and I hope those charges, that it ends up being murder,” Newman said. “It makes me angry, very angry. How can someone have that many charges on them and have this opportunity to harm my brother.”

Robinson is facing charges of failing to report/concealing a death, financial transaction card theft, and larceny of a vehicle, according to court records.

He appeared in court on Friday morning where he received a $200,000 secured bond.

No further information was released.

This is a developing story. Check back with wsoctv.com for updates.