The Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office late Thursday identified Melanie Rose Little, 42, as the adult woman found dead Tuesday at her residence at 424 Deloris Road in Basye.
Sheriff Timothy C. Carter also said that a second-degree murder warrant has been issued for Larry Johnson Little Jr., whom authorities had previously described as a person of interest in the investigation into Melanie Rose Little’s death.
Carter said over the phone earlier in the day that the preliminary autopsy performed by the medical examiner’s office confirmed that the woman had died from multiple gunshot wounds. He declined to say where the bullet wounds were located or provide any information on the gun involved.
Melanie Rose Little’s body was discovered at 6:52 p.m. Tuesday at 424 Deloris Road after the Sheriff’s Office received a phone call requesting a welfare check.
Carter said Larry Johnson Little Jr. formerly had lived at the same residence, although his last known address is listed as 58 Ulysses Court, Linden.
Regarding the victim’s time of death, Carter said police have a time frame but declined to release that information.
The request for a welfare check came from a relative of Little’s, who on Tuesday night was identified as a person of interest. Carter said Little is now considered a suspect and is being sought on the second-degree murder warrant.
Little, 44, has been described as a being a 300-pound white man who is 5-foot 11-inches tall. He may be driving a red 2019 Jeep Cherokee with a license plate reading OSNAPS.
According to previous reports, David Perault, a neighbor of Melanie Rose Little, said on Wednesday that he had seen the Jeep within the last couple of weeks.
Carter said Little, at one point, was married to the victim and once resided at the house in which she was found dead. Carter declined to say when the two were married or when he had lived in that house.
Carter said his office has received calls from people in different parts of Virginia and other places regarding the case.
Carter said the office is following through on all leads and has contacted Little’s family members and acquaintances.