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Arden surgeon murder investigation: Detectives search storage unit, took wife's DNA

(FILE) Frank "Buddy" McCutcheon with his niece (Photo credit: Angela Clark)

BUNCOMBE COUNTY, N.C. -- Dr. Frank McCutcheon's death remains a mystery.

His brother John has spoken to News 13 from Arkansas since the investigation began, and has repeatedly said Brenda McCutcheon, Frank's wife, is the "salt of the earth."

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Warrants show investigators took DNA swabs from Brenda McCutcheon's mouth. Detectives said "during the interview, Brenda McCutcheon denied shooting Frank." Detectives asked her what clothing she went to bed in, and took her clothing, including yoga pants and a maroon long-sleeved shirt, into evidence.

Caroline Ribelin lives a few streets down from the McCutcheon's home at 43 Tree Top Drive.

"Yes, there's been a lot of discussion," said Ribelin, who also said neighbors have been discussing the case and asking each other about Brenda. "She was not well known in the neighborhood, and actually didn't have any friends in the neighborhood that we've been able to know about."

Others who live closer to the home confirmed the couple was private.

Warrants indicate the couple was being investigated for possible embezzlement.

Investigators went to a unit in a Sweeten Creek Road storage facility, which warrants indicate Brenda McCutcheon rented.

RELATED | Arden doctor found dead during embezzlement investigation, warrant says

Detectives seized 55 boxes. Some were labeled "personal taxes" dating back to 2001. Others were labeled "insurance claims."

The manager of the facility would not speak on camera, but told News 13 detectives were at the facility on Friday and Saturday, taking boxes and reviewing surveillance footage.

She said Dr. McCutcheon had his own storage unit. It's unclear if detectives have gone into it.

"There's a lot of questions that will need to be answered, one way or the other," Ribelin said.

Warrants say Brenda McCutcheon contacted a shredding company to shred the contents of about 40 boxes at the unit.

Warrants report North Carolina revenue agents sat down with McCutcheon and his wife on July 11 requesting tax returns and payroll reports. According to a 911 call, Brenda McCutcheon found her husband shot in the head the morning of July 16.

A next-door neighbor who knows Brenda McCutcheon, but did not wish to speak on camera, said McCuthcheon is a good woman, and thinks she nothing to do with her husband's death.

The Buncombe County Sheriff's Department would not answer if detectives have cleared Brenda McCutcheon as a suspect in her husband's murder.

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