Manhunt continues in Lenoir County for man who shot deputy and resident

Published 10:27 am Saturday, November 21, 2020

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The Lenoir County Sheriff’s Office reported in a Saturday morning updated that the manhunt for Robert Lee Strother continued throughout the night and into the morning with several agencies assisting in the search.

Strother allegedly shot Lenoir County Deputy Steven Key in the neck on Thursday night outside a home in La Grange after Key responded to a domestic call. The suspect fled the scene, then on Friday morning “shot a Lenoir County resident multiple times and stole his red 2003 Dodge Dakota extended cab pickup truck . . .” according to the sheriff’s office. The man was reported to be hospitalized in critical condition. The truck was later located, but Strother – who faces multiple felony charges – was not.

The search continued Friday night in the perimeter established along the Kennedy Home Road corridor from Snake Road to Lang Skinner Road. Night vision technology from assisting agencies aided in the manhunt.


Robert Lee Strother. Courtesy Lenoir County Sheriff’s Office

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The Lenoir County Sheriff’s Office stated the following agencies have aided in the search: Craven County Emergency Management, Craven County Sheriff’s Office, Deep Run Volunteer Fire Department, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Greenville Police Department, Harnett County Emergency Services, Hugo Volunteer Fire Department, Kinston Police Department, Lenoir County Emergency Services, Lenoir County EMS, New Hanover County Emergency Services, New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office, North Carolina Department of Insurance, North Lenoir Volunteer Fire Department, Onslow County Sheriff’s Office, Pender County Emergency Management, Pitt County Sheriff’s Office, Sandy Bottom Volunteer Fire Department, Seven Springs Volunteer Fire Department, Southwood Volunteer Fire Department, State Bureau of Investigation (SBI), State Highway Patrol, U.S. Marshals Service, Wayne County Sheriff’s Office, Wilson County Sheriff’s Office and Wyse Fork Volunteer Fire Department.

“We truly appreciate all these agencies that are helping us in the search for Mr. Strother,” Lenoir County Sheriff’s Office Maj. Ryan Dawson said. “This shows how much agencies and organizations in Eastern North Carolina care about each other.”

“If anyone has any tips about this case, please call 252-559-6118,” Dawson said. “We also appreciate the thoughts and prayers from Lenoir County residents the past couple of days in regards to this situation.”



Shooting suspect caught near Kinston after days on the run


UPDATED: North Carolina deputy shot during domestic call; suspect shoots Lenoir resident and steals truck