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Authorities confirm the body of Thomas Bryson has been found

Authorities confirmed the discovery of Thomas Bryson's body just before midnight Sunday evening. (Photo credit: Henderson County Sheriff's Office)

Authorities confirmed the discovery of Thomas Bryson's body just before midnight Sunday evening.

A member of the Skyland Fire and Rescue Department found the body of Thomas Bryson in a corn field in Arden on Sunday night. A cause of death hasn't been determined.

Thomas Bryson went missing last Wednesday during the search for Phillip Stroupe, II, who was on the run from authorities.

Stroupe was captured the next day and authorities say he was driving Bryson's truck.

The Henderson County Sheriff says Stroupe has been difficult to get information from during much of the investigation.

Henderson County Sheriff Charles McDonald says Stroupe will likely face murder charges in the coming days, in addition to multiple charges levied in Buncombe, Transylvania, Henderson, Yancey and McDowell counties.

Sheriff Charles McDonald, Henderson County, "I can tell you he's not been very corporative up until this point. I think I would say really in all of this is, there's been a tremendous amount of community effort, crossing a lot of different counties, bringing in a lot of different agencies, sheriff's office, federal and state agencies together to get to this point."

He tells us Bryson's family has been notified and their deepest sympathies go out to them.

The Henderson County Sheriff's office is planning a press briefing for Monday, but a time has not yet been released.

We've also learned that three people have been charged in connection to Stroupe's manhunt.

Authorities say they are now charged with harboring a fugitive.

News 13 talked with two of the three people charged after they bonded out of jail.

Jennifer Hawkins and Frederick Badgero deny the charges, saying Stroupe threatened them into helping him.

Both Hawkins and Badgero have criminal histories, and Badgero says he met Stroupe in jail but didn't know him well.

They say Stroupe showed up at Hawkins house with Thomas Bryson's truck and threatened them not to call the police.

"He said he was wanting to take the truck and dump it in the lake, Lake James, and he said to follow him. I feel like he was going to kill me," said Badgero.

Hawkins says Stroupe had a gun and knocked on their door around 6 p.m. Wednesday night. She says he used another name and had covered his tattoos with makeup.

All three charged are scheduled to be in court in Buncombe County on Monday morning.

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