PUB: 3/28/14, issue 15
It was more than a month before Howell’s friends discovered the body and reported it to police. Haywood County authorities found the body of 50-year-old Michael Joseph Howell, a sports reporter, shot to death and stowed in a storage building at a house he owned in the Sheepback Mountain area near Maggie Valley. Authorities traced his daughter, Crystal, to Richmond County, Ga. and charged her with concealing the death of her father. A short time later, after preliminary autopsy reports confirmed that Mr. Howell died from a single shotgun wound to his head, Haywood authorities charged Crystal Howell, 17, with first-degree murder and extradited her to Waynesville. She remains in custody of the Haywood County Jail.