New details released after authorities find body of local man believed missing for weeks

Keith Perdue was last seen on Feb. 2

Undated family photo of Keith Perdue.
Undated family photo of Keith Perdue. (Perdue family)

FRANKLIN COUNTY, Va.UPDATE: February 24, 11;15 a.m.

Authorities have released new details after the body of a man believed to have been missing for weeks was found Sunday.

Franklin County authorities say they believe they found the body of Keith Perdue on Sunday afternoon in a wooded area not far from Perdue’s home.

A passerby reportedly saw the law enforcement vehicles in the area and called into the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office.

The man told authorities that they don’t live in the area, but they frequent Muddy Fork Road to visit family. He contacted investigators to tell them that he helped Perdue back to Perdue’s home several weeks ago after an accident.

The witness states that Perdue said his brakes had gone out and he needed a ride home. He says Perdue showed no signs of impairment or injuries from the accident.

Authorities say the witness drove Perdue home, went back to Perdue’s car to get his house keys, took Perdue’s house keys back to him and then left once Perdue went inside.

Investigators do not suspect foul play in Perdue’s death. Results from the medical examiner’s office are pending.

UPDATE: February 23, 2020, 8:30 p.m.

Authorities have located the body of a man believed to be Keith Perdue, who was missing for weeks.

The Franklin County Sheriff’s Office said around 3:30 p.m. Sunday, the body of a man was found in a wooded area that leads down to a creek, not far from Perdue’s home.

Deputies said preliminary identification leads to Perdue, based on identification cards located inside his clothing.

The searches were done by the Virginia Department of Emergency Management, the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office, and Franklin County Public Safety with assistance from the Rocky Mount Police Department.

No foul play is suspected at this time, pending results from the Medical Examiner’s office.


Authorities are looking into new avenues as they continue their search for a man who was last seen on Feb. 2.

Investigators are attempting to retrieve any details from the cell phone and financial records for Keith Perdue that may narrow down his interactions over the last two weeks.

Searches are continuing in the Muddy Fork Road area around both his residence and the wreck location.

The Franklin County Sheriff’s Office is looking for any information about Perdue since Feb. 2.

Investigators are also interested in speaking with the two men who assisted him after his vehicle accident.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to contact Lt. Nolen at 540-483-6662.

Original story published: February 16, 2020, 3:10 pm

Franklin County deputies are trying to find Keith Perdue.
Franklin County deputies are trying to find Keith Perdue.

Franklin County deputies are searching for a 56-year-old man who was reported missing on Friday.

According to the Sheriff’s Office, a family member reported Keith Bentford Perdue missing just before 9:30 a.m. Friday after she was unable to make contact with him for the past two weeks. A wellbeing check was done at his residence, but he was not located.

Perdue was last seen at Walmart in Rocky Mount on Feb. 2, which deputies confirmed through store video surveillance.

A motor vehicle accident was reported by a passerby around 9:30 p.m. on Feb. 2 in the 1000 block of Muddy Fork Road. A vehicle registered to Perdue was recovered in that accident, but he was not in the vehicle.

Deputies said Perdue has a history of health conditions that are a cause of concern for his disappearance.

There is currently no evidence indicating foul play, however authorities said it is very unusual for Perdue to be gone this long without contacting his family.

On Saturday, members of the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office and the Franklin County Department of Public Safety began searching the Muddy Fork area to try to locate Perdue, but they were not successful.

New information the Sheriff’s Office received Sunday indicated someone came upon a car sitting in the road with the lights on the night of Feb. 2. Deputies said the passerby stopped and spoke with two white men in an unknown vehicle. They stated that the victim wrecked his car and they had taken him back home, that he was fine, but realized upon arrival to his home that his house keys were still in his vehicle. According to deputies, they also stated that they returned to the wrecked vehicle to retrieve the keys, but the passerby did not see the men enter the victim’s vehicle nor did they see the victim. The passerby proceeded to leave and saw the men pull their vehicle into the victim’s driveway.

The Franklin County Sheriff’s Office is interested in speaking with the two men who assisted Perdue back to his home on the night of Feb. 2. Contact Lt. Nolen at 540-483-6662.

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