DENTON NC – The Amber Alert issued for a missing 14-year-old from Davidson County has been canceled after she was located and will be returning to North Carolina after a harrowing experience.
Savannah Childress, was reported missing on Feb. 11 from her home in southern Davidson County. An Amber Alert was issued on Feb 15th
Investigators had discovered that Savannah was using her Davidson County Schools issued computer to communicate with an individual using multiple online platforms. As the investigation progressed investigators discovered the same individual was also talking to several other juvenile females in Alamance County. The Alamance County Sheriff’s Office was able to interview these juveniles that provided information regarding the identity of the suspect.
The individual in question was identified as 38-year-old William Ice of Mercer County Pennsylvania. Investigators were able to determine that William Ice had removed Savannah from her residence on February 11 and were also able to identify a red Dodge Durango that he was possibly driving. The Davidson County Sheriff’s Office obtained arrest warrants for Ice for first-degree kidnapping and soliciting a child by computer.
Working with several law enforcement partners including the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the United States Secret Service, the United States Marshal’s Service and the Pennsylvania State Police leads were developed to indicate that Ice was in the area of a McDonalds in Lonoke County Arkansas near Interstate 40. The information was passed on to law enforcement in that area including the Lonoke Police Department, Lonoke County Sheriff’s Office and the Arkansas State Police.
The following is from a release provided by the Arkansas State Police regarding the events that transpired during the Arkansas investigation:
“The Federal Bureau of Investigation, joined by multiple state and local law enforcement agencies, continue to piece together today a series of incidents that ended last night when a Lonoke police officer was shot and wounded. The Arkansas State Police Criminal Investigation Division is leading the investigation as it relates to the officer-involved shooting at 1834 Arkansas Highway 31 in Lonoke and a second crime scene south of Lonoke where a fugitive wanted in at least two states was wounded and later died.
At approximately 8 PM (Saturday, February 20, 2021) two Lonoke police officers on patrol duty recognized a Dodge sport utility vehicle parked at the McDonald’s restaurant near Interstate 40. It appeared to be a vehicle used in connection with a North Carolina child abduction case. The officers exited their patrol car and approached the suspect vehicle. The officers could see two people inside the SUV and ordered the driver to get out of the vehicle. The driver, later identified as William Robert Ice, 38, of Jackson Center, Pennsylvania, complied with the orders, but as he exited, aimed a gun at one of the officers and began shooting, critically wounding the officer. The second Lonoke officer, who was uninjured, returned gunfire as Ice re-entered the vehicle and fled.
An Arkansas State Trooper already in the area heard police radio communications reporting an officer down and spotted the suspect vehicle leaving the McDonald’s parking lot. The trooper pursued the vehicle through Lonoke, south along Arkansas Highway 31, and onto Raprich Road, where it became disabled in a snowbank. A 14-year-old female passenger fled from the vehicle and was secured by a state trooper. Inside the SUV, the trooper found Ice critically injured from what preliminarily appears to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Working with sheriff’s deputies in Davidson County, North Carolina and Special Agents with the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, Special Agents of the Arkansas State Police Criminal Investigation Division were able to identify the 14-year-old passenger as the victim in a child abduction case. Ice, who died at a Little Rock hospital earlier today, was also wanted by Pennsylvania law enforcement authorities in connection with other child predator cases. His body has been submitted to the Arkansas State Crime Laboratory to determine the manner and cause of death. The wounded Lonoke police officer is reported to be in stable condition at a Little Rock hospital.
Questions relating to the identity of the Lonoke officers and their administrative status should be directed to the Lonoke Police Department.
Inquiries that may relate to the out-of-child predator cases should be directed to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Davidson County (North Carolina) Sheriff’s Department, and Pennsylvania State Police.
Arkansas State Police Special Agents are preparing an investigative file that will be turned over to the Lonoke County prosecuting attorney who will decide if the use of deadly force by a law enforcement officer was consistent with Arkansas laws.
The agents will continue to assist other law enforcement agencies in connection with cases that may involve Ice and the abduction of the 14-year-old victim who will be returned to North Carolina later today”.Arkansas State Police
The Davidson County Sheriff’s Office would like to emphasize that without the teamwork of all law enforcement agencies involved the outcome of this case could have been much different.