Police Make Arrest in Homicide
The Belmont Police Department responded to South New Hope Road at the Seven Oaks Bridge at approximately 1:15 am on Sunday May 5, 2019 upon report of a vehicle off the road and in the water. Subsequent investigation revealed a deceased person in the vehicle, who was later identified as Delia Aldridge Rick, 61-years-old. The investigation determined that she had been murdered.
A joint investigation by the Belmont Police Department and the Gaston County Police Department led to a First Degree Murder charge filed for the arrest of James Michael Rick, 48 years old. The Gaston County Police were also looking for a second person of interest in this case, Melinda Kay Robinson, 51 years old. Robinson is an acquaintance of both Delia Rick and James Michael Rick.
On Wednesday, May 15, 2019 members of the Gaston County Police Criminal Investigations Unit, Special Investigations Unit and Emergency Response Team conducted a warrant service operation and arrested James Michael Rick and Melinda Kay Robinson at a residence in the 1000 block of Old Carolina Mining Rd. outside of Stanley, NC. Melinda Kay Robinson has been charged with Accessory After the Fact to First Degree Murder.
The area where the arrest operation took place is near East Gaston High School. The East Gaston Administration and School Resource Officer were notified and the school was placed on a temporary perimeter lockdown as a precaution. The lockdown was ended immediately after the operation concluded.
Anyone with further information about this case is encouraged to contact the Gaston County Police at (704) 866-3320 or Crimestoppers at (704) 861-8000.