Courtesy of Lee County Sheriff’s Office

Lee County Sheriff Brian Estes said Thursday that deputies had identified a body found last week in the Osgood area as Michael Bradley Cox, who was reported missing in December.

The remains were located in a heavily wooded area behind 1741 and 1745 Farrell Road and were in a 55-gallon barrel that also contained concrete.

Medical examiners removed the concrete and discovered “a dismembered body,” according to Estes.

Deputies have charged 42-year-old Jackie Lamar Bright with murder.

According to Estes, Bright “has a very extensive criminal history and was released from prison in May of 2022. He was currently on parole when the Lee County Sheriff’s Office placed Bright into custody for unrelated charges of possession of a stolen vehicle and controlled substance violations on Jan. 6. Bright bonded out of jail and was arrested again on Jan. 11 by the Lee County Sheriff’s Office for the parole violation and additional controlled substance violations.”

Estes said Bright is currently in custody of the North Carolina Department of Corrections. The investigation is ongoing and additional charges are expected.

“I would like to thank Lee County Emergency Services, Moore County Emergency Services, Deep River Fire Department, Cypress Point Search and Rescue Dive Team, the North Carolina SBI, NC Trooper Association K9 unit, NC K9 ERT, Sanford Public Works, Moore County Public Works, and the dedication of the men and women of the Lee County Sheriff’s Office for their hard work. I would also like to extend my condolences and prayers to the family of Michael Bradley Cox,” Estes said in a press release.