Preliminary hearing held for man accused of beating Carter County woman to death


The man accused of beating an elderly Carter County woman to death last summer appeared in court Friday in Carter County General Sessions Court in Elizabethton.

Chad Benfield is facing murder and burglary charges in the killing of 89-year-old Mary Nolen in her home. Benfield was a neighbor who had just been released from prison only months before after serving time for burglary.

Evidence about the killing was heard at a preliminary hearing Friday and was found sufficient for a grand jury to consider January 26.

That could lead to an indictment and then trial of Benfield.

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