The Murder of Jeffery McKay

Jeffery McKay

On August 14, 2023, Jeffrey McKay, 39, was shot and killed, allegedly, by Chad Woods, 41, after McKay hit and killed Wood’s 17-year-old son, Chad Woods Jr., with his work pickup, while the family was walking along the side of a road in rural North Carolina This is an open and active investigation.

The Wood’s and McKay Incident

On August 14, 2023 at approximately 6:30 a.m., Chad Woods, and his (unnamed) wife, along with Chad Woods Jr, 17, had been walking along Dink Ashley Road, on the outskirts of Timberlake, North Carolina. Their vehicle had run out of fuel, so they had walked back to their home to re-group before returning to the vehicle. While walking along the side of the road, a North Carolina Department of Adult Correction Dodge pickup approached them. The Dodge allegedly drifted toward the side of the road just enough that it struck Wood’s 17-year-old son.

The driver of the Dodge pickup, Jeffrey McKay, immediately called 911 to report what had happened and requested an ambulance to expedite to the scene. While waiting for emergency services, Chad Woods allegedly pulled out his firearm and shot McKay. Woods and his wife left the scene in McKay’s Dodge pickup and drove to their home nearby, leaving McKay and the body of their deceased son on the side of the road.

Chad Woods Jr.

The Investigation into McKay’s Death

Person County, North Carolina sheriff’s deputies and emergency medical personnel arrived on scene. Initially, it was difficult to make sense of what they found, but they could soon piece together the incident, based on the initial 911 call made by McKay. Chad Woods, Jr. was pronounced dead at the scene and McKay was transported to an area hospital where he died from his gunshot wounds.

The Person County 911 Emergency Center provided additional evidence was discovered through the. Several people had called into the center that morning with the report that a vehicle had broken down, not knowing if people in a disabled vehicle needed assistance.

Melody Moore, a woman who lived near the accident scene, stated, “It sounds like they’re yelling for help, so probably about two minutes after that, I heard two gunshots, like back-to-back, just pow pow! And then it got really quiet.”

Detectives learned that Jeffrey McKay was employed at the North Carolina Department of Adult Corrections as an electrical supervisor in the engineering department. He lived in Youngstown, N.C, approximately 40 miles southeast of Timberlake, N.C. They formed the theory that he had been commuting between work and home when the incident occurred.

Investigators immediately started looking for McKay’s missing Dodge pickup. They discovered the vehicle at a nearby home. Deputies arrested Chad Woods on charges of second-degree murder and larceny (theft) of a motor vehicle. No charges were filed against Mrs. Woods.

Chad Woods

The Interview of Chad Woods

Investigators conducted the initial interview with Chad Woods. They learned of his side of events that had allegedly happened that morning. He further stated that after shooting McKay, he threw the weapon into a nearby pond.

Search and rescue personnel, along with K-9 units and a dive team, attempted to discover the weapon but were forced to call off the midday search because of soaring weather temperatures. The search resumed the next day. Officials have stated that search efforts will continue until the weapon is found. 

The Woods Investigation Continues

Chad Woods father, Lawrence Clayborn, stated in a local news interview. “He was just out of it, going off and stuff. He was going, ‘He just killed my son. He killed my son.'”

The arraignment of Chad Woods took place on August 21. 2023. He is being held in the Person County Detention Center, pending further legal proceedings. If convicted, the maximum sentence for second-degree murder in North Carolina is life in prison without the possibility of parole.

The Aftermath

The obituary for Jeffrey McKay states he is survived by his wife, young daughter, his parents, and his sister. A funeral mass was held on August 26, 2023 at the Prague Catholic Church in Jacksonville, N.C.

Chad Woods Jr. is survived by his parents, three brothers, his grandfather, amongst other family members. His funeral was held on August 19, 2023, at the Grater Cleggs Chapel Community Missionary Baptist Church, in Timberlake, North Carolina.

Chad Woods’ surviving son publicly stated about his deceased brother, “He was a good person. He was a real good person. He wanted to be an IT technician. He wanted to be positive in life. He wanted to help people. He was a people person.”

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