Editor’s Note: This article was published as part of a content-sharing agreement between Army Times and The Fayetteville Observer.
FORT LIBERTY — A Laurinburg man has been charged in December 2020 slayings of a Special Forces soldier and a veteran whose bodies were found at Fort Liberty.
In a news release Friday, U.S. Attorney Michael Easley said that Kenneth Maurice Quick Jr., 23, was indicted Aug. 1 on charges including murder, conspiracy to distribute and possess with the intent to distribute cocaine, firearm and obstruction charges and two counts of the use of a firearm causing death.
The charges are related to the slayings of Master Sgt. William LaVigne II, 37, and Army veteran Timothy Dumas Sr., 44 — identified in the federal indictment by their initials.
The new release states that Quick allegedly committed first-degree murder by shooting one person on then-Fort Bragg property, on Dec. 1, 2020.
“In addition, it is alleged Quick used a firearm to murder a second victim that same day,” the news release states. “The murder of the second victim was (allegedly) in relation to a separate charge for conspiracy to distribute cocaine.”
The bodies of LaVigne and Dumas found Dec. 2, 2020, in the woods accessible to the public near a training area along Manchester Road.
The indictment also alleges that Quick conspired “with other persons, known and unknown to the Grand Jury” to distribute cocaine between Nov. 25, 2020, and Dec. 1, 2020.
The record further alleges that Quick shot and killed “T.D. Sr.” on Dec. 1, 2020.
The court records state that while allegedly trafficking cocaine, Quick caused the death of “W.J.L. II” by using a firearm and attempted to dispose of the body of “W.J.L. II,” and that he attempted to conceal the bodies Dec. 1, 2020.
LaVigne’s certificate lists his cause of death as multiple gunshot wounds. Dumas’ cause of death is listed as gunshot wounds to the chest and head.
The records alleged that on either Dec. 2 or Dec. 3, 2020, Quick obstructed justice by attempting to move and burn a truck belonging to “T.J.D. Sr.”
The case has been under investigation by the FBI and Department of the Army Criminal Investigation Division.
According to an FBI poster seeking information in the slayings, LaVigne’s gray 2015 Chevrolet Colorado truck was found at the crime scene. Dumas’ 2014 Dodge Ram truck was found abandoned, and apparently burned, at an undisclosed location.
The news release alleges that Quick was a felon at the time of the deaths and knowingly possessed ammunition, while also obstructing justice by attempting to dispose of the body of one of the victims.
Quick is currently serving nearly 5 years in federal prison for a February 2023 conviction of possessing a firearm as a felon in Scotland County in May 2022, federal court records show. Charges of cocaine trafficking were dismissed in that case.
Prior charges for Dumas and LaVigne
At the time of his death, LaVigne was assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, U.S. Army Special Operations Command and had been in the Army for 19 years. His death certificate states his last home address was in Hope Mills.
Dumas, a resident of Pinehurst, joined the Army in 1996 and served for 20 years as a property accounting technician, according to records. He retired from the Army in March 2016 as a chief warrant officer 3.
In an April 2021 interview with Rolling Stone, LaVigne’s father, Billy LaVigne Sr. said that despite meeting most of his son’s friends and associates, “There was never no mention of this Dumas.”
LaVigne and Dumas were each scheduled to appear in court on unrelated cases in the months after their deaths according to court records.
LaVigne was supposed to be in Cumberland County District Court on Jan. 15 for a Feb. 17, 2020, hit-and-run charge, court documents state.
Dumas was scheduled to appear in Forsyth County District Court on Dec. 17 on charges of breaking and entering, communicating threats and impersonating a law enforcement officer for allegedly breaking into an apartment in Walkertown in Forsyth County “with the intent to terrorize and injure an occupant of the building,” on April 11, 2020. The record states Dumas yelled, “police open the door” after knocking.
LaVigne also was involved in other Cumberland County cases that never resulted in charges, records show.
On March 21, 2018, at his Anhinga Drive home, LaVigne shot and killed his friend, Army Sgt. 1st Class Mark Leshikar. The LaVigne and Leshikar families had just returned from a trip to Disneyland. The Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office investigated and declared the death “justifiable homicide.
Six months later, LaVigne was indicted Sept. 1, 2018, on felony charges of harboring an escapee and maintaining a vehicle or dwelling place to manufacture a controlled substance.
Cumberland County District Attorney Billy West told the Fayetteville Observer in 2021 that authorities were trying to locate an individual who had warrants for various property crimes when they found the suspect at LaVigne’s home. While at the scene, drugs were also found.
As the case progressed, West said others involved in it, including the property crime suspect and a woman who was also at LaVigne’s home during the time when the drugs were found, took responsibility for the drugs and were prosecuted.
Charges against Lavigne were dropped, West said.
LaVigne’s father told Rolling Stone that after Leshikar’s death, his son changed.
He said he last spoke to his son on Thanksgiving, a few days before his death, and that he sounded “somewhat normal,’ but also seemed “anxious and preoccupied.”
LaVigne was expected to serve another two months in the Army before retirement.
“He was planning on coming home and building a log cabin on our property,” his father said. “It’s the last thing we spoke about.”