The killing 15 years ago mystified Kansas investigators.
On the night of August 15, 2003, 51-year-old hairstylist Carol Fleming and her boyfriend, Rick Harris, had gone out to a club, then stopped by Fleming’s hair salon to pick up Harris’s son. From there, the couple went to Fleming’s home in Beloit and then went to bed.
Later that night or early the next morning came a 911 call: Fleming had been shot in the head while in bed with Harris, according to the Kansas Bureau of Investigation and a Kansas Missing and Unsolved flyer.
Fleming’s teenage son was in a second room. Another son, Charles “Chuck” Ray Fleming, who was 31 at the time, had parked his pickup in the garage and when police showed up “was in the process of feeding the dog,” the flyer states.
Investigators reported no significant findings that led to the immediate identification of a suspect in the killing. For 15 years the case went cold despite an executive order from then-Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius offering a $5,000 reward leading to an arrest and conviction.
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On Monday authorities finally named a suspect.
Police arrested Charles, now 45, in Johnson County, Kansas, on suspicion of first-degree murder in his mother’s death, according to a statement from Beloit City Manager Jason Rabe, who is acting as a spokesman for the Beloit Police and the Mitchell County Sheriff’s Department.
Contacted by PEOPLE, Rabe declined to reveal what led to the arrest.
Charles Fleming has a criminal record that includes a 1996 conviction on multiple counts of writing worthless checks and driving while a habitual offender, a 2000 conviction for perjury and a 2008 conviction for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, according to records of the Kansas Department of Corrections.
Fleming is being held the Mitchell County jail on a $1 million bond after a hearing Tuesday, where attorney Julie Effenbeck was appointed to represent him. She could not immediately be reached for comment.
He was due back in court on July 25, the day after his 46th birthday.