12/02/10 — Woman found in Goldsboro

View Archive

Woman found in Goldsboro

By Steve Herring
Published in News on December 2, 2010 1:46 PM

A 28-year-old woman missing overnight Tuesday from a Calypso group home was found safe and unharmed Wednesday afternoon in Goldsboro.

More than 50 people had scoured the area in and around Calypso in northern Duplin County beginning early Wednesday morning for Tonya Nicole Fox before the search was called off after she showed up in Goldsboro.

Duplin County Sheriff Blake Wallace said Ms. Fox, who is "somewhat mentally impaired," had been last seen possibly between 6:30 and 7 p.m. on Tuesday.

Ms. Fox is normally allowed to leave the group home to walk over to a nearby store, Wallace said. It is possible she was attempting to travel to a relative's home, he added.

The search team included a Highway Patrol helicopter and Duplin County sheriff's deputies, Duplin County Emergency Management, Duplin County Search and Rescue and Calypso and Faison firefighters.

"She walked into the Sheriff's Office in Wayne County about (3 p.m.)," Wallace said Wednesday afternoon.

Wallace said Ms. Fox met someone and asked for a ride to the Wayne County Fairgrounds.

Wayne Sheriff's Capt. Tom Effler said his office had received a call Wednesday from a Duplin County sheriff's detective about the missing woman. Effler said Duplin authorities had discovered that a Calypso-area minister had given Ms. Fox a ride to the BP station near the fairgrounds.

Wallace said a bloodhound was brought in to aid with the search Wednesday. After smelling a piece of the missing woman's clothing, the dog tracked to a nearby church.

It was then that the preacher was interviewed. The preacher said Ms. Fox had asked him for a ride to the fairgrounds.

Effler said Ms. Fox's caregiver had come to the Wayne County Sheriff's Office. She left, but returned shortly thereafter with Ms. Fox whom she said she had found on Ash Street.

"I am just glad that she is all right. There does not appear to be any foul play," Wallace said.

Wallace said he did not know what had happened to Ms. Fox overnight, but that he had people on the way to talk with her.

Wayne County officials said Ms. Fox's caregiver took her to Wayne Memorial Hospital to be examined.