UPDATE: Three kidnapping suspects in Johnson County now charged with murder

L to R: James Combs, Michael May and Brittany Arnold, are now charged with first-degree murder. They were originally charged in the case of a North Carolina kidnapping victim last seen in Johnson County, Tennessee. (WCYB Archive)

Three of the six people arrested and charged in the kidnapping and disappearance of a North Carolina man in Johnson County, Tennessee are now charged with murder.

Assistant District Attorney General Dennis Brooks told News 5 that first-degree murder charges have been filed against James Parker Combs, Michael Stacey James May and Brittany Arnold. Those individuals were originally charged in the disappearance of Carlton Lamaar Edmondson, 29, of Burk County, North Carolina.

Sheriff Mike Reece said they observed cell phone video that showed Edmondson being beaten. A location in Johnson County has also been identified as a possible location of Edmondson's last whereabouts. Some reports have indicated the victim could be in the Trade, Tennessee area.

Edmondson's family was contacted and a $700 ransom was demanded for his return, according to reports.

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