What began as an investigation into the kidnapping of a missing woman expanded into a grisly murder case for Spartanburg County, South Carolina law enforcement. As recently reported by CNN the discovery of the woman on the property of a real estate agent led the Sheriff’s Office to dig deeper into the matter. Bodies were uncovered and murder charges continue to pile up as the investigation proceeded into a number of cold case homicides. The accused, a registered sex offender, was arrested, but the full extent of the charges may not be known for some time.
The Initial Investigation
Police were investigating the disappearance of a man and woman who had been missing since August, and arrived at the suspect’s property on November 3 to look into a tip. Authorities discovered that the accused and the woman knew each other, and that she posted on social media that she would be going to his property on the day of her disappearance. In addition, the last ping from her cell phone indicated she was at that location.
As officials were investigating, they heard screams coming from a shipping container and opened it up to find the woman chained up by the ankle and neck.
Kidnapping Case Opens the Door to Additional Charges:
After arresting the property owner, police questioned the woman about the incident and found out that she’d watched the suspect kill her boyfriend; murder was added to the list of charges when police discovered the body.
However, as the suspect continued to cooperate with investigators, he confessed to additional killings. Two days after the woman was rescued by authorities, the accused led police to two more bodies buried on his 95-acre property. Little is currently known about their identities, but officials continue to investigate.
Several Cold Case Murders Uncovered:
In a bizarre twist in the investigation, the accused confessed to additional killings in a 2003 cold case. He conveyed numerous about four homicides that took place at a motorcycle shop near Spartanburg, details that only the killer could have known about the matter. The business owner, his mother, a service manager, and employee were all found fatally shot at the shop. Currently, the suspect if facing kidnapping charges in the case of the woman, as well as seven counts of homicide.
Two Bodies Identified: The coroner’s office did make a positive identification of the other bodies found on the accused’s property, through examination of known tattoos. The man and woman were a married couple that had been missing since December 2015.
Like South Carolina, San Diego authorities aggressively pursue murder and kidnapping crimes, and will leave no stone unturned if they discover crimes related to their initial investigation. These are felony offenses, punishable by prison time and fines if you’re convicted, so it’s critical to have a dedicated criminal defense attorney to fight for your rights. A knowledgeable lawyer will represent your interests in court and present all available defenses to ensure the best possible outcome. Please contact a qualified criminal attorney in San Diego to discuss your situation if you’re facing any type of felony charges.