Illegal Alien Charged With Murder In North Carolina

HARNETT COUNTY, NC (WRAL) – A Spring Lake has been charged with second-degree murder following a shooting Wednesday night.

The Harnett County Sheriff’s Office said deputies responded to 13729 N.C. Highway 210 at about 7 p.m. and located a man inside the home with a gunshot wound to the upper body.

Lionel Esquivel Mercado, 63, of Newton Grove, was pronounced dead at the scene.

Raul Vargas Santana, 45, of 13729 N.C. Highway 210, was charged in connection with the shooting. He was being held at the Harnett County Detention Center under $1.5 million bond.

Santana and Mercado knew each other, but the motive behind the shooting was unclear, deputies said.

Authorities said Santana was scheduled to appear in court Thursday.

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