Isle of Wight featured in ‘Killing fields’ program

Published 12:34 pm Saturday, January 6, 2018

A case that remained dormant in Isle of Wight County for several years has been reopened through the Discovery Channel’s popular investigative program. This year, the detectives for the Isle of Wight County Sheriff’s Office are featured as they reopen a case  from nearly 14 years ago.

Specifically, “Killing Fields: Murder Isle,” looks at the Carrie Singer case. On July 1, 2004, the 28-year-old Hampton resident was found beaten to death — through blunt force trauma — in a field off Blounts Corner Road near Morgart’s Beach Road. The killer(s) and reasons for Singer’s death were not uncovered.

Det. Randy Patrick, who originally worked on the case, again gets another opportunity to investigate, this time with new technology that was not available to aid in the original search.

The county Sheriff’s Office was approached a year ago, said spokesman Lt. Tommy Potter, to be considered for a series feature, now in it’s third year.

“At first we said no, just because of time constraints,” he said. “Then we felt the exposure would help the case. “We were very, very concerned about how Carrie’s family would be with this. But her mother and sister are very supportive. They hope it will spotlight their case and other cold cases.”

Potter continued, “We had reservations about having cameras in the office. The first couple of weeks we had to adjust,” adding that after awhile, they weren’t as noticeable.

“The crew members were very sensitive to our needs. If other stuff was going on and we didn’t have time to film, they found other things to do,” Potter said.

Although the office had looked again at the case soon after Mark Marshall was elected sheriff, they offered support gave another chance to solve the crime.

Detectives Patrick and Kris Coughlin led the other investigators for the new search. Potter said the team took the approach of working as if they had just found the body.

The show, which premiered on Thursday night on the Discovery Channel, will continue for another seven weeks. Viewers will follow the team’s progress.

“People who watched the first episode saw how a DNA profile was developed, but there were no matches then,” Potter said. “But we sent some evidence to private lab in Florida that found a second DNA profile off clothes and the crime scene. Now there are two unknown DNA profiles[available.]”

He said one of his concerns is what advances and headway were made in the case.

“It was a good trade-off. We invested our time and effort to be totally transparent. They provided some resources, financial to get testing via cutting-edge technology.

He added that the team feels “very honored to be a part of the “Killing Fields” family.

Editor’s note: The online version now includes three corrections: The day of the show’s premiere, Det. Kris Coughlin’s last name and the correct name for Morgart’s Beach Road.