(Anderson, SC). Today, Judge Lawton McIntosh sentenced Demetrius Gambrell on charges of Attempted Murder and Armed Robbery to seventeen years in jail, to be served concurrently on both charges. He will get credit for 370 days he has already served. Representing the State was Senior Assistant Solicitor Kristin Reeves and Bill Hinnant represented Mr. Gambrell. 

On January 18, 2017 the victim, who was friends with Gambrell, was with the defendant on Leon Drive in Anderson County when the defendant opened fire and shot him five times before leaving him in a ditch by the side of the road and taking the victim’s vehicle. The vehicle was discovered outside of Gambrell’s house, where it had been set on fire, and the victim’s wallet was later recovered from the defendant’s residence. 

Then, on January 31, 2017 the defendant entered the Stop-a-Minute on the 28 Bypass in Anderson County, asked the store clerk for cigarettes before pointing a gun at the clerk and demanding money, threatening to shoot the clerk if he refused. He then left in a red car wearing a camo jacket and baseball hat. The incident was recorded on video. 

Gambrell was arrested on February 2, 2017 in Louisiana in the red car wearing the same clothing he wore when he committed the armed robbery. Officers in Louisiana recovered a .380 and ballistics testing matched the bullets recovered from the victim in the attempted murder. 

Following the sentencing Solicitor David R. Wagner said that “violent acts such as these will not be tolerated in our jurisdiction. If you leave the State, we will bring you back, and bring you to justice.”

Walhalla, SC—An Oconee County jury convicted R. L. Webb of Murder and Burglary 1st degree today in General Sessions Court.  The Honorable R. Lawton McIntosh sentenced Webb to 45 years on each charge to be served concurrently.  The State was represented by Assistant Solicitor Blair Stoudemire, who was assisted by Assistant Solicitor Brian Livingston. 

On September 1, 2016, Webb went to the residence of 50 year old Steven Gregory Brock at 208 Brock Road in Westminster. Webb and Brock had a verbal dispute earlier in the day at Webb’s residence.  When Webb arrived at Brock’s residence, he found the gate to the property was locked.  He unsuccessfully attempted to gain entry by shooting the lock several times. After gaining entry to the property via an alternate route, Webb approached Brock’s home and made forced entry. 

Webb found Brock in a bedroom in the home, along with a female acquaintance. Upon entering the bedroom, Webb fired a handgun at Brock, fatally striking him in the head.  The female acquaintance was able to flee the residence in Webb’s car, as Webb continued to fire at her.  A short time later, she approached a City of Walhalla police officer for assistance.  The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office also received two 911 calls around this time. The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office responded to the Brock Road location where they located Brock’s body and processed the crime scene.  The murder weapon was later located on the premises by a law enforcement K9 officer. 

After the shooting, Webb hid in the woods nearby the home and later fled the State. He was located the next day in Lavonia, Georgia and was apprehended by authorities there. 

At trial, The State presented video and written evidence of Webb’s confession, eyewitness testimony, law enforcement witnesses, medical experts, and South Carolina Law Enforcement Division experts in the fields of firearms/ballistics, DNA, and gunshot residue analysis.  

Solicitor David Wagner stated after the trial, “The death of Steven Gregory Brock was a senseless and merciless tragedy. R. L. Webb killed Mr. Brock in the sanctity of his own home, the place where we should all feel most safe.  Today’s sentence ensures that our society will be protected from R. L. Webb for the rest of his life.  I would like to thank our law enforcement partners at the Oconee County Sheriff’s Office, Walhalla Police Department, and the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division for their outstanding work in pursuit of justice.”

Anderson, SC - Late Thursday afternoon an Anderson County jury convicted Raeford Wideman of Murder, and he was sentenced to 30 years in jail by Judge Lawton McIntosh. The case was tried by Assistant Solicitor Stan Overby for the State. 

At trial it was established that during the early morning hours of March 15, 2015, Wideman shot the victim, Ryan Oneill Tatum, multiple times while Tatum was in a vehicle outside of Mr. Wideman’s residence. Mr. Tatum had been dating Mr. Wideman’s sister at the time of the shooting, and was returning from Greenville with her and her cousin when the Defendant came out of the house armed. An investigation by the Anderson County Sheriff’s Office determined that multiple shots had been fired at Mr. Tatum while the firearm was placed inside the vehicle he was driving. The investigation proved that Mr. Wideman had every intention of killing Mr. Tatum, though Wideman initially maintained he had fired accidentally. 

Following the verdict Solicitor David R. Wagner said “Thanks to the investigation by Detective Nathan Mitchell and the rest of the Anderson County Sheriff’s Office, Mr. Wideman’s story was disproved and there can be justice for Mr. Tatum and his family today.”

Walhalla, SC – An Oconee County jury convicted Kenneth Strother Collins of Murder, Kidnapping and the Possession of a Weapon during the Commission of a Violent Crime today in Oconee General Sessions Court. The Honorable Scott Sprouse sentenced Collins to 30 years for Murder and 20 years for Kidnapping to be served consecutively as well as 5 years for the weapons charge to be served concurrently. The State was represented by Deputy Solicitor Lindsey Simmons who was assisted by Assistant Solicitor Jason Alderman.

 

On January 12, 2015, Jeremy Little was staying at an apartment at Walhalla Gardens where he met Collins and two other individuals. Collins purchased some methamphetamine from Little who was going to go meet with Collins later to get the rest of the money for the drugs. Sometime after 1 a.m. on January 13th, Little arrived at 505 N. Laurel Street in Walhalla where he was to retrieve money and smoke methamphetamine with Collins and others in the home. Two of the witnesses stated that when they came into the house that Collins was in a rage, brandishing a large knife and accusing Little of being an law enforcement informant. During his rage, he stabbed the victim, walked away and then returned to kick and stomp him in the face. As he lay helpless in the floor, Collins stabbed Little in the back again as one of the witnesses watched.

 

The witnesses were then forced to help Collins clean up the crime scene. The victim was stripped, gagged, bound and stuffed in a sack inside of rugs and other materials while he was still alive. Collins planned to hide the victim’s body in the attic but law enforcement arrived before they could hide him.  

 

Upon receiving two 911 calls, officers went to the location and at first found the house dark and quiet. When they went back later, they saw blood and forced entry into the house. Little’s body was found at the attic stairs but Collins and the two witnesses who were hiding in the attic were not immediately found. Several hours later, one of the witnesses fell through the ceiling from the attic where she and the others had been hiding under insulation. Collins later came down from the attic with a gun cocked in his mouth but was taken into custody before any shots were fired.

 

Although Collins claimed self-defense in this case, witness testimony and forensic evidence proved otherwise.

 

Solicitor David Wagner stated after the trial, “Kenneth Collins committed a savage attack on Jeremy Little. Jeremy Little begged for his life and Collins continued to brutally assault and stab him. Then, in a final brutal act, Collins stripped Little, bound him, gagged him and stuffed him in a bag while he was still alive in an attempt to hide his crime. Collins now has 50 years in prison to reflect on his crimes and how many people have been hurt because of his actions. Unfortunately, this will not make up for the loss of Jeremy Little to his family members and friends. However, it will prevent Collins from hurting or possibly killing someone else. I would like to thank Oconee County Sheriff’s Office and Walhalla Police Department for the excellent work done on this case.”