James Dunmore could face death penalty if convicted of murdering Allisha Watts

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Monday, August 28, 2023
No bond for man accused of killing Allisha Watts
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The boyfriend of Allisha Watts, the woman who went missing earlier this month, faced a judge for murder charges Monday.

MOTGOMERY COUNTY, N.C. (WTVD) -- The boyfriend of Allisha Watts, the woman who went missing earlier this month, faced a judge for murder charges Monday.

James Dunmore, 51, is charged with Allisha Watts' murder after her body was found in a rural area last week.

In court, Watts' friends and family were quiet, except for sniffles and cries, when Dunmore entered the courtroom Monday.

Dunmore stood in the far corner of the courtroom and never turned to look at Watts' family and friends, who were all decked out in green, her favorite color.

"If he is in fact the person that did this to (Allisha Watts), then he has taken away something that she can never get back," Brenda Smith said on behalf of Watts' mourning mother. "If he is the one that did it, she said that he deserves to have his eyes closed just like her daughter had her eyes closed and never will be open again."

Dunmore is being held without bond. He was appointed a public defender but will eventually get a different attorney from Raleigh who handles cases involving the death penalty. Dunmore's next scheduled court appearance in Sept. 14.

Court documents show the murder happened back in mid-July on the day Watts vanished.

Friends have been told digital evidence led investigators to the cemetery in the small town of Norman. There investigators found what is believed to be Watts' body in the woods.

Cemetery carekeepers tell ABC11 over the last month cleaning crews and other people had been through the area. There's even been a large gathering for a funeral, all while Watt's body was just out of sight yards away.

Dunmore was arrested at his home in Charlotte and then transferred about 70 miles to Montgomery County.

Dunmore did not lead investigators to the cemetery.

Watts' family and the cemetery carekeepers all want to know more about when Watts' body was left there and how exactly it happened.

Allisha Watts' boyfriend, James Dunmore, 51, was arrested Thursday morning in Charlotte and charged with murder.