DANVILLE, Va. – UPDATE
A suspect has been arrested in connection to a stolen car that was found in Danville that police say belongs to a missing North Carolina man.
According to the Raleigh Police Department, Justin Merritt, 34, was arrested in Danville and charged with robbery, larceny of a motor vehicle and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon in connection to the stolen range rover that was found.
The stolen car reportedly belongs to William “Andy” Banks or Raleigh, who was reported missing Saturday afternoon. Authorities say Banks is still missing but that his car was found Monday.
The case of a missing Raleigh man has crossed state lines, moving into our area.
Danville Police are now involved after the Range Rover that William “Andy” Banks was meeting someone to sell at a shopping center in Raleigh was found abandoned in Danville.
The discovery in Danville is one of the few clues police have, based on what they’ve shared publicly. The Danville Police Department is an assisting agency in the case and unable to provide specifics.
Banks’ family is desperate to bring him home now after more than two days missing. They sat down with our news partner WRAL in Raleigh, North Carolina, Monday sharing what makes him the Andy they love.
“He never meets a stranger and he really has a way with people that they gravitate toward him and they want to be around him,” said Andy Banks’ sister, Dede Banks Smith.
A Raleigh Police Union Facebook page shared a missing persons poster showing Andy and a picture of the Range Rover he was meeting someone to sell. His friends called police Saturday to report him missing after hours of trying to reach him.
“He was going to sell his vehicle at 2 p.m. in the Cameron Village area at the K&W parking lot and I can see on his text messages that he last checked his phone at 1:42 p.m., so that would have been right before two o’clock,” the caller said in a 911 call provided by Raleigh Police.
The case broke Monday when police recovered the car somewhere in Danville, 90 minutes north of where he was supposed to be.
A friend of Banks’ told WRAL the 39-year-old regularly sells cars on the side, this deal arranged on Craigslist, and clearly something is wrong.
“I don’t know what the definition of missing is, but he would never go six or seven hours without responding to me,” the 911 caller said.
Banks is about six feet tall and was last seen in shorts and a shirt with mountains on it. His family holds out hope someone will say something.
“We look forward to seeing you I miss you and we’re gonna do everything we can to bring you home,” said Andy Banks’ brother Mark Banks.
The case continues to draw attention on social media. With that comes a lot of speculation, but Banks’ family is asking people to stick to the facts, stay positive and continue sharing his story.