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August 14, 2020

Pendergraft Sentenced

Derek Shawn Pendergraft

Derek Shawn Pendergraft, 22, of Asheville, has been sentenced to life in prison, for the murder of his coworker, Sara Ellis. On August 26, 2019, Pendergraft pleaded guilty to first-degree murder and two counts of aggravated sexual abuse resulting in death. According to filed court documents and statements made in court, on July 24, 2018, Pendergraft, who worked at the Pisgah Inn, murdered his co-worker, Sara Ellis, during the perpetration of aggravated sexual abuse.
The murder occurred on the Blue Ridge Parkway, within the special territorial jurisdiction of the United States, and within the Western District of North Carolina.
He is currently in federal custody and will be transferred to the custody of the federal Bureau of Prisons upon designation of a federal facility.

About The Author

Andy has worked in broadcasting around Western North Carolina over the last 17 years. He serves as the Operations Manager and Program Director for WRGC and WBHN. “I’ve been with the crew here at Five Forty Broadcasting since the idea of bringing the station back to Jackson County at 540-AM. I feel a personal connection with community radio and the area”. In the past, Andy has worked with iHeart Media and Sky Country Broadcasting. He resides in Haywood County.

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