Wright said he covered her body with logs next to a creek near his home, Newman said. Alsup was reported missing from Marietta on March 8.
On March 17, he shot and killed Athena Hopson, 25, of Johnson City, Tenn., while they were on a walk near his home, Newman said. He told authorities he shot her when he tripped and fell.
He put her body in the back of his truck, but he said it fell out of the vehicle while he was driving over a bridge, Newman said. Wright allegedly put her body in a nearby river. She was reported missing March 21 by her cousin.
The sheriff said authorities had recovered remains believed to be Alsup and Vanmeter, but they were still searching for Hopson’s body.
Johnson City police officers searched Wright’s pickup truck after discovering he was the last person Hopson had been seen with, the News Sentinel reported. Her cellphone was allegedly found in the truck.
After officers obtained a search warrant for Wright’s property Thursday, he admitted to killing the women, Newman said. Authorities recovered a gun believed to have been used in each homicide.
Wright, who has no criminal background, faces three counts of capital murder, three counts of use of a firearm in the commission of a felony and three counts of disposing of a body, Newman said. He remains in jail in Abingdon, Va., without bond.
Investigators said they have no reason to believe there are additional victims, but the FBI and U.S. Marshals Service are assisting with the investigation.
“We know that carnival traveled extensively, certainly throughout the East coast,” Newman said. “We have plans of contacting jurisdictions where that carnival very well may have been to see if they have missing persons.”
Correction: A previous version of this story stated James Michael Wright was a subcontractor for James H. Drew Exposition when he met the three alleged victims. However, that's what Wright told investigators when he was interviewed. The sheriff's office clarified on Facebook that Wright actually worked for Pony Express, which its owner confirmed.
In other news:
Channel 2 Action News learned that officers were called to the south curb of the airport after a driver called 911.