COLUMBIA, S.C. — Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott said a fight and retaliation led to an innocent man being shot and killed in his own bed last month.
Lott announced arrests Wednesday in the April 6 killing of 62-year-old Charlie Jackson Jr.
"I'm frustrated," Lott said about what led to his killing and others in the community this year. "Frustrated over the number of people that we have killed in our community. Why aren't people enraged about what's happening?"
Lott said the beginnings of this incident started on April 5, when Jackson's daughter and her boyfriend, 19-year-old Da'Juan Richardson, went to a home on Lucille Drive in Columbia. The sheriff said the two got into a fight with a woman at that home, and Richardson was hit on the head with a bottle.
Lott said Richardson went back to his house to get a gun, returned to the Lucille Drive home, and fired multiple shots into the home in a drive-by shooting. None of the bullets hit anyone; however, a man inside the home, 27-year-old Troy Stevenson, then went and got his gun.
Officers say Stevenson went to a home on Devoe Street where he thought Richardson was and fired eight shots into that house. The bullets hit Jackson Jr., who was sleeping in his bed at the time.
"He had nothing to do with why his house was shot at," Lott said. "He's dead because of silly fighting, some silly retaliation."
Lott showed the gun Stevenson used in the crime, calling it a "killing machine."
Lott said his investigators were able to track down both Richardson and Stephenson and take them into custody.
Lott said people who Stevenson was charged in connection with the 2013 killing of Kelly Hunnewell, a Columbia mother of four who was murdered at the bakery where she worked. Stevenson 's first trial ended in a hung jury and the second ended with him being found not guilty. Two other men were convicted and sentenced for killing Hunnewell.
Lott said he wants to see the public get more involved in stopping these crimes.
"It scares us to death," Lott said. "[Law enforcement] can't do it. The police department and sheriff's department can not stop this (on our own)."
Lott said this is the 11 killing in Richland County this year, which is one more than all of last year.