CMPD charges man with murder after body found at northwest Charlotte park

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A homicide investigation was underway at a northwest Charlotte park Friday after a body was discovered.

Viewers alerted Channel 9 of the large police presence at Shuffletown Park, off Bellhaven Boulevard near Interstate 485, around 11 a.m. and said that officers were closing the park and making people leave.

CMPD identified the body found in the park Friday as Ellis Bradham, 27, who had been missing since Sunday when his sister last saw him.


Bradham had been shot, CMPD said.

His sister, Kenya Smith, reported him missing after he was supposed to pick up her mother who was visiting Charlotte for the holidays.

Her brother, known as Duke, never showed up.

“Nothing he could have done,” Smith said. “He didn't deserve this.”

A person of interest was arrested Friday and was interviewed.

Later Friday night, CMPD investigators executed a search warrant at the east Charlotte apartment where Bradham was last seen. Earlier, investigators were at a home on Mount Holly-Huntersville Road.

Police charged Carico R. Hayward, 28, with murder in the slaying of Bradham.

The investigation is ongoing.