Man arrested for 70-year-old ‘Can Man’s’ brutal murder

Posted at 5:20 PM, Sep 06, 2013
and last updated 2013-09-06 18:40:12-04

Michael Edward Elmore

DINWIDDIE COUNTY, Va. (WTVR) – A suspect has been arrested in the brutal murder of 70-year-old Carter Bascom Northington in Dinwiddie County.

Sources said 48-year-old Michael Edward Elmore of the 6500 block Claiborne Road in Sutherland was arrested around 4 p.m. Friday.

Elmore was charged with first-degree murder and is being held without bond in Meherrin River Regional Jail pending arraignment in Dinwiddie County General District Court Monday morning.

Northington, who may be one of the best-known people in Dinwiddie County, was often seen walking in the Cedar Heart community dressed in his blue jeans and suspenders, collecting cans.

Northington was found beaten and unconscious with blunt force trauma to his head in the yard of a vacant house Monday evening. He died from his injuries Tuesday morning.

Northington’s sister said her brother was borderline mentally handicapped and lived a very simple life.

A candlelight vigil to honor Northington is scheduled for Friday at 8 p.m. at the Food Lion shopping center in Dinwiddie. Attendees are asked to bring candles and cans for the ceremony.

“It kind of breaks my heart… that someone would hurt this man that never bothered anybody,” said Lisa Hawkins, who organized the vigil.

A “Cans for Carter” drive is also underway to fund Northington’s funeral expenses.

dumspterA dumpster provided by Atlantic Iron and Metal at the Westgate Shopping Center located at 4330 Westgate Drive in Dinwiddie is in place for donations until Friday.

Additionally, cans may be dropped off at Reaching New Heights Magazine  at 16037 Continental Boulevard in Colonial Heights. Take the Ruffin Mill exit, and look for the dumpster just past Boulevard Flower Gardens near MarvaMaid.

A fund has also been set up at the Bank of Southside Virginia by a friend of Northington’s to accept donations for information leading to the arrest. Donations can be made at Bank of Southside Virginia branch. As of Thursday, Sept. 5, $2400 has been donated.

If you have information that could help investigators, call the Dinwiddie County Sheriff’s Office at 804-469-4550 or Petersburg/Dinwiddie Crime Solvers at 804-861-1212.