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Avery County Man Levi Hicks Charged in Death of Avery County Native Betsy Dellinger

By Tim Gardner

An Avery County man has been charged with murder exactly one week following the death of an Avery County female native along with two additional charges.

According to a press release Friday evening, November 19 by Tim Barnett, Chief of Police for the Town of Beech Mountain, the Beech Mountain Police and the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation have been investigating the death of Betsy Dellinger as reported on November 12, 2021.  The press release further revealed that as a result of the investigation, Levi Hicks, age 33 of Elk Park in Avery County, has been charged with one count of Murder, one count of Felony Possession of a Stolen Motor Vehicle and one count of Felony Possession of Methamphetamine.  

Hicks is currently being held by the Carter County Sheriff’s Office Detention Center in Elizabethton, TN on unrelated charges.  He is presently awaiting extradition back to North Carolina.

Dellinger lived much of her life in the Spear Community of Avery County.

At approximately 3:35 pm on November 12, the Beech Mountain 911 Communications Center received a call about an unresponsive female at 103 Upper Holiday Lane in Beech Mountain.  Police Officers were dispatched and on arrival found a white female approximately 40-45 years old lying on the floor unresponsive and not breathing. The female was deceased and transported to Cannon Memorial Hospital. The deceased was identified as Betsy Dellinger. Cause of death appeared to be by non-accidental means, according to an initial press release by the Beech Mountain Police Department, also provided to the High Country Press by Chief Barnett.