YADKINVILLE — A Hamptonville man has been charged with murder in the death of his mother, who was found in her van in October 2013.
Andy Eric Collins, 51, of 4161 Emma Drive, Hamptonville, was charged with the first-degree murder of his mother, Azelyne Collins, on March 13. According to a press release from the Yadkin County Sheriff’s Office, Azelyne Collins, 82, of 4748 Old Highway 421, Hamptonville, was reported missing on Oct. 15, 2013.
Azelyne Collins was reported missing by her daughter, Cindy McQueen, who arrived at her mother’s home on Oct. 15 to pick her up to attend the High Point furniture market where the two had a sales booth.
Investigators determined that Collins had attended the High Point furniture market on Oct. 14, 2013, and was last seen driving away from Darwin’s Restaurant on Hoots Road in Hamptonville later that day. A silver alert was issued and a search conducted by the Yadkin County Sheriff’s Office and local and state agencies.
On Oct. 16, investigators discovered Collins’ body in her silver Honda van in a heavily wooded area off Rocky Branch Road in Hamptonville. Sheriff Ricky Oliver said it was obvious upon discovery of the body that she did not die of natural causes. The medical examiner ruled the cause of death as strangulation.
Investigators with the Yadkin County Sheriff’s Office and the State Bureau of Investigation canvased the neighborhood and began interviewing the family of the victim. It was determined that the last person to see Collins alive was her son Andy Collins, who lived a short distance from where the van was discovered.
On March 13, after multiple interviews, search warrants and assistance from the SBI lab and SBI investigators, Andy Collins was charged for the alleged first-degree murder of Azelyne Collins. He is being held with no bond at this time. The next hearing date in the case is scheduled for April 9.
In a statement from the Yadkin County Sheriff’s Office, officials said they would like to thank the community for their patience and support during this investigation and the State Bureau of Investigation, Highway Patrol helicopter team, Winston-Salem Police, FBI and local agencies that assisted during the investigation.
“I want to commend the investigators with the sheriff’s office and the SBI for staying focused and following the evidence which lead us to our suspect,” Oliver said.