Deputies: Body of missing man Thomas Bryson located in Buncombe - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina

Deputies: Body of missing man Thomas Bryson located in Buncombe County

Thomas Bryson (Source: HCSO) Thomas Bryson (Source: HCSO)
Cornfield where Bryson's body was found (July 31, 2017/FOX Carolina) Cornfield where Bryson's body was found (July 31, 2017/FOX Carolina)
Media staging area near scene where Thomas Bryson's body was located in Arden, NC (FOX Carolina/ 7/30/17) Media staging area near scene where Thomas Bryson's body was located in Arden, NC (FOX Carolina/ 7/30/17)
Search crews in Mills River (July 29, 2017) Search crews in Mills River (July 29, 2017)
A makeshift memorial was created in Arden in memory of Thomas Bryson. (7/31/17 FOX Carolina) A makeshift memorial was created in Arden in memory of Thomas Bryson. (7/31/17 FOX Carolina)
ARDEN, NC (FOX Carolina) -

The search for a man deputies believed was kidnapped by the suspect in a six-day-long manhunt ended in tragedy on Sunday.

Officials with the Henderson County and Buncombe County Sheriff's Offices both confirmed that a body located in a corn field near South Ledbetter Road and along Glenn Bridge Road SE in Arden was that of missing man Thomas Bryson. His family has been notified.

The news came on day five of a search for Bryson that spanned both North Carolina and Tennessee.

"We're certainly saddened and not happy with the way it is, but we're bringing that kind of closure to a family that's really been through a tremendous amount over the last week," said Sheriff Charles McDonald. McDonald.

Forensic teams are investigating at the scene at this time and an autopsy is expected to be scheduled in the near future, said McDonald. McDonald said capital murder charges will be pursued against Phillip Stroupe II, who he said has not been cooperative during the investigation.

McDonald said Bryson's body was located after a member of Emergency Management Services returned to search area that had already been searched. Deputies were notified around 9 p.m. that the body had been found.

McDonald said participating agencies will now step up the investigation to to make sure due justice is served.

Bryson's official cause of death will not be confirmed until an autopsy has been completed, said McDonald.

Deputies believe Thomas Bryson, 68, was kidnapped on Wednesday morning after leaving his home on Wolfpack Trail in the South Mills River Road area.

Investigators believe Phillip Stroupe was responsible for Bryson’s disappearance.

Stroupe was arrested early Thursday morning after leading deputies on a chase in Thomas Bryson’s vehicle and a foot pursuit in McDowell County. Stroupe had a .38 caliber revolver in his possession when he was arrested.

On Saturday, deputies asked people to avoid the South Mills River area if possible and asked residents in the area to be patient and accommodating to search crews scouring the area for Bryson.

The sheriff’s office sent this alert on Saturday:

“Please be aware that additional searches for Thomas Bryson will be conducted in the South Mills River area today. We ask residents who live in the area to allow search crews space to work. Unnecessary travel to the area should be avoided to allow crews and equipment the access and space they need. Thank you.”

During a news conference on Saturday, Sheriff Charles McDonald said search crews were still hoping to find Bryson alive but were growing increasingly concerned.

“We’re holding on to hope that Bryson hasn’t been harmed, but if he’s incapacitated or in a place where he can’t get shelter, things are looking very grim," McDonald said. “We don’t know if he was harmed or just left in a place that he can’t get out of or get help.”

McDonald said he was growing frustrated with the lack of cooperation investigators had been receiving from Stroupe.

“This could have all been resolved, but it has not been," the sheriff said. "We’re doing everything we can do in accordance with the constitution (to get Stroupe to talk). In other countries, he would have probably given up the info by now.”

During the news conference, Buncombe County Sheriff said three people had been charged after investigators learned Stroupe visited their home in Barnardsville in the hours after Bryson disappeared.

READ: Sheriff: Third suspect arrested after 3 accused of harboring Stroupe during manhunt

Around 10 p.m. Saturday, Henderson County Sheriff's Office confirmed that Thomas Bryson's vehicle had been in the Gatlinburg and Sevierville, TN areas on Wednesday after 10 a.m.

On Sunday, deputies said they searched several locations throughout Western North Carolina and Eastern Tennessee. Deputies continued interviewing people suspected of aiding Stroupe and said more charges are possible.

Bryson's son is the head basketball coach at West Henderson High School. The school tweeted its support for the Bryson family on Monday:

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