Monthly Archives: January 2014

Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Participates in K-9 Training and Certification

"Hyko"

“Hyko”

Greenville PD K-9 "Rocky"

Greenville PD K-9 “Rocky”

Oconee County Sheriff's Office Deputy Tommy Crompton and K-9 "Ayder"

Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Tommy Crompton and K-9 “Ayder”

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

(Walhalla, SC)——————————-The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office has been among law enforcement agencies from at least three states that have been participating in K-9 training and certification in Oconee County this week.

Besides the Sheriff’s Office, other law enforcement agencies participating have included from South Carolina: the Seneca Police Department, Anderson County Sheriff’s Office, the Travelers Rest Police Department, the Duncan Police Department, the Greenville Police Department, the Surfside Beach Police Department, and the Anderson City Police Department. From North Carolina: the Concord Police Department. And from Florida: the University of Florida Police Department.

The training and certification process involved not only the detection of narcotics but explosives as well. The training has taken place at four different locations in and around Seneca, including Gignillet Field, the former J.N. Kellett Elementary School, The Shoppes at Park Place North, and Moutainview Center.

The K-9 seminar and work shop is usually done once a year, according to Sgt. Tommy Crompton of the Oconee County Sheriff’s Office. Law enforcement agencies throughout the east are invited and the seminar is used in part to improve the K-9’s capabilities, as well as that of their handlers.

“At the end of the week, per state law, every dog that is involved in apprehension work has to be certified,” according to Sgt. Crompton. “On top of that, we get certified on different types of narcotics and different types of explosives.”

The American Police Canine Association, which is based in Indiana, provides the certification, guidelines, and support for the handlers and their K-9’s. K-9’s are used for multiple purposes by law enforcement agencies and the services they provide are priceless to officers, according to Sgt. Crompton.

“A K-9 on the street can help track a lost person, a lost hiker, and if it is a narcotics detection dog, it can be used for the detection of any kind of illegal substance that individuals can transport from one location to another. Also, with apprehension the dogs are trained to apprehend someone and they are trained to hold them, not maul them, so the officer can get control of that individual and take him into custody. In regards to explosives, the K-9 can search an area quicker than individuals. “

The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office currently has six K-9’s. The seminar and certification will conclude on Friday.

Oconee County Sheriff’s Office is Seeking the Public’s Help Regarding November Burglary

State Farm Pictures #2

State Farm Pictures

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

(Walhalla, SC)—————————————–The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office is seeking the public’s help in regards to a November 2013 burglary that occurred at a business near Seneca.

According to investigators, deputies responded during the early morning hours, around 4:08am, on Tuesday, November 26th, in reference to an alarm at the State Farm Insurance branch at 1701 Sandifer Boulevard.

When a deputy arrived on the scene, the officer noticed the back door had been pried open. After clearing the building, the deputy noticed several drawers open at several desks in the building. Deputies then began to process to check for fingerprints.

According to investigators, an undisclosed amount of money was taken from the business and no personal information from any customer of this State Farm office was taken. Also according to investigators, a vehicle was seen in the area a short time before deputies arrived.

A subject was located behind the Tractor Supply store who was wet from the rain and was wearing gloves, but a search of the subject and their vehicle did not turn up any evidence that the subject had anything to do with the break-in.

If you have any information concerning this burglary, please contact Crime Stoppers at 864-638-STOP, 1-888-CRIME-SC, or text in your tip to 274637. You don’t have to give your name and if you tip leads directly to an arrest, you could be eligible for a cash reward of up to $2,000.

Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Charges Additional Man in Murder of Richard Alan Marszalek

Zack Daniel Patterson

Zack Daniel Patterson

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

(Walhalla, SC)——————————The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office has charged a Fair Play man this afternoon in the homicide of Richard Alan Marszalek.

23 year old Zack Daniel Patterson of 410 West Pine Grove Road has been charged with murder. He is the third individual charged in the case.

Patterson was arrested back on January 14th and booked into the Oconee County Detention Center around 7:02pm on charges of Receiving Stolen Goods. His surety bond amount on those charges was $2,500. Patterson also had a hold placed on him due to charges in Richland County. He was still being held at the Oconee County Detention Center and had a bond hearing before a magistrate last this afternoon around 5:40pm after being served with the murder warrant. Bond was denied.

Last Friday, 28 year old Joshua Michael Fulbright of 303 S. Isundega Street and 27 year old Patrick Grant Covone of 141 West Spearman Road, both of Westminster, were charged with murder in the death of the 61 year old Marszalek. Investigators believe that Marszalek was killed during an altercation that investigators believe occurred sometime between December 27th and December 29th of last year at 141 West Spearman Road. Investigators believe as a result of the altercation that Marszalek received blunt force trauma to the head.

A female came to the Oconee County Law Enforcement Center on January 11th to report that her uncle had been missing since December 29th, 2013. Marszalek was reportedly last seen walking down West Spearman Road sometime before the New Year. Marszalek’s last known address was the West Spearman Road address. The mobile home at the West Spearman Road address was burned on January 4th.

Once Marszalek was reported missing, investigators began to follow up on leads and interviewed numerous persons. It was during excavation work last Friday afternoon using heavy equipment by investigators that the body was discovered in the rubble of the burned down mobile home.

Mr. Marszalek did have a history of medical problems and was under VA care, according to investigators.

An autopsy was performed this past Sunday by Oconee County Coroner Karl Addis and a press release was issued by the Coroner’s office regarding the autopsy this past Sunday as well.

The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office is continuing their investigation.

Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Arrests Husband and Wife on Drug Charges

Jesse Logan Waters

Jesse Logan Waters

Anita Crystal Waters

Anita Crystal Waters

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

(Walhalla, SC)———————————The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office arrested a husband and wife from Westminster Wednesday on multiple drug charges.

Deputies served arrest warrants Wednesday on 37 year old Jesse Logan Waters and 31 year old Anita Crystal Waters, both of 180 School House Road in Westminster.

Jesse Waters has been charged with Possession of Marijuana – 2nd or subsequent offense, Distribution of Methamphetamine – 2nd offense, and Distribution of Drugs within Proximity of a School, all of which occurred at the School House Road address. Waters was also charged with Drug Trafficking Charges for Possession of Methamphetamine (more than 10 grams but less than 28 grams) and Resisting Arrest at 5505 West-Oak Highway.

Anita Waters has been charged with Distribution of Drugs within Proximity of a School, Distribution of Methamphetamine, and Possession of Marijuana, which all occurred at the School House Road address.

The closest school to the School House Road address is Oakway Intermediate School, which is about a half mile away from the 180 School House Road address.

According to investigators, a search warrant was executed late Wednesday afternoon at the School House Road location in Westminster. Drugs, drug paraphernalia, and other items were seized during that time. Both individuals were not at the School House Road location at that time, but were later arrested on Wednesday by deputies at the Dollar General location at the West-Oak Highway address, where drugs were found on the person of Jesse Waters, who ran from deputies but was later captured.

Anita Waters was booked into the Oconee County Detention Center around 6:41pm Wednesday, while Jessie Waters was booked into the Detention Center around 7:05pm.

Hunter Education Class Being Offered in March

Hunter Ed Class

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

A hunter education class is being offered at Foothills Community Church at 505 Bountyland Road in Seneca on Saturday, March 8th from 8am until 3pm. Pre registration is required by going to www.dnr.sc.gov or by calling 1-800-277-4301. Space is limited.

All residents and non-residents born after June 30, 1979 must successfully complete a hunter education course that is approved by the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources before a hunting license can be obtained.

Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Charges Two Men in Murder of Richard Alan Marszalek

Patrick Grant Covone

Patrick Grant Covone

Richard Alan Marszelak

Richard Alan Marszelak

Joshua Michael Fulbright

Joshua Michael Fulbright

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

(Walhalla, SC)——————————The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office has charged two men with murder after the body of a Westminster man reported missing over the weekend was found this afternoon.

28 year old Joshua Michael Fulbright of 303 S. Isundega Street and 27 year old Patrick Grant Covone of 141 West Spearman Road, both of Westminster, have been charged with murder in the death of 61 year old Richard Alan Marszalek of the West Spearman Road address. Investigators believe that Marszalek was killed during an altercation that investigators believe occurred sometime between December 27th and December 29th of last year at the West Spearman Road location. Investigators believe as a result of the altercation that Marszalek received blunt force trauma to the head.

A female came to the Oconee County Law Enforcement Center this past Saturday to report that her uncle had been missing since December 29th, 2013. Marszalek was reportedly last seen walking down West Spearman Road sometime before the New Year. Marszalek’s last known address was the West Spearman Road address. The mobile home at the West Spearman Road address was burned on January 4th.

Once Marszalek was reported missing, investigators began to follow up on leads and interviewed numerous persons. It was during excavation work this afternoon using heavy equipment by investigators that the body was discovered in the rubble of the burned down mobile home.

Mr. Marszalek did have a history of medical problems and was under VA care, according to investigators.

Fulbright was arrested back on January 12th by the South Carolina Highway Patrol on multiple drug charges and has been at the Oconee County Detention Center since that time. He was served with warrants charging him with Kidnapping, Attempted Murder, Possession of a Weapon during Commission of a Violent Crime, and Grand Larceny in regards to a separate incident that occurred back on September 5th, 2013 at a location on Crossroads Drive in Seneca. Fulbright had a bond hearing around 5:20pm this afternoon on the Murder charge and the four charges from the incident on Crossroads Drive. Fulbright was denied bond on the Murder and Attempted Murder charges. The total surety bond amount on the Possession of Weapon during Commission of a Violent Crime, Kidnapping, and Grand Larceny charges is $80,000.

Covone was arrested and served with the murder warrant this evening at the Law Enforcement Center around 8:30pm.

An autopsy has been arranged by the Coroner’s office. This exam will be conducted on Sunday. The cause of death information will be released in a timely manner after the exam is completed by Coroner Karl Addis.

The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office is continuing their investigation.

Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Seeks Public’s Help Regarding Recent Burglaries

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

(Walhalla, SC)———————————–The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office is seeking the public’s help regarding some recent burglaries that investigators feel are connected.

The first incident occurred this past Saturday at 14016 Cherokee Path Drive near Seneca sometime between 5am and 4pm. A television and an IPOD docking station were reportedly taken. The front door was reportedly kicked in.

The second incident occurred sometime between 7:30am and 11:35am Tuesday at 543 Tokeena Road. The side door to the residence was reportedly kicked in and a television was stolen as well.

The third incident occurred also on Tuesday morning between 8:45 and 9:30 at 240 Deer Knoll Road. The complainant told deputies that someone knocked on the front door and when she peered out, she saw an individual that she did not recognize. That individual went to the back door, knocked several times and then went back to the front door and began kicking it, which broke the frame and door and the door swung open.

Deputies are looking for a vehicle seen at or in the area of two of the burglaries, an older four door brown in color Honda Accord, possible a 1990’s model. Deputies are also looking for an individual, a white male, about 6 feet tall, skinny with glasses (with thin rims), wearing a toboggan, light jacket with jeans on, possible 20 to 25 years old.

If you have any information on these burglaries, please contact Crime Stoppers at 864-638-STOP, 1-888-CRIME-SC, or text in your tip to 274637. You don’t have to give your name and if your tip leads to an arrest, you could be eligible for a cash reward of up to $2,000.

Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Seeks Public’s Help in Search for Missing Man

Richard Alan Marszalek

Richard Alan Marszalek

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

(Walhalla, SC)——————————The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office is seeking the public’s help in their search for man reported missing over the weekend.

According to investigators, a niece of 61 year old Richard Alan Marszalek came to the Oconee County Law Enforcement Center this past Saturday to report that her uncle had been missing since December 29th, 2013. Marszalek was reportedly last seen walking down West Spearman Road sometime before the New Year. Marszalek’s last known address is 141 West Spearman Road, which has since been destroyed by fire.

Mr. Marszalek has a history of medical problems and is under VA care, according to investigators. Marszalek is a white male, 5’8” tall with gray hair and blue eyes.

If you have any information on the whereabouts of Richard Alan Marszalek, please call Crime Stoppers at 864-638-STOP, 1-888-CRIME-SC, or text in your tip to 274637. You don’t have to give your name and if you tip leads to an arrest, you could be eligible for a cash reward of up to $2,000.

Oconee County Sheriff Mike Crenshaw Discusses Benefits of Safe Harbor House to Law Enforcement

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006

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

(Walhalla, SC)————————————–With the announcement today that officials from Safe Harbor have raised the necessary funds and will be opening a domestic violence shelter within the next six months, Oconee County Sheriff Mike Crenshaw says that the shelter will benefit everyone in Oconee County, including the law enforcement community.

“From an operational perspective, our folks are no longer going to be transporting victims to Greenville or to Anderson, we will have a local shelter here,” says Sheriff Crenshaw. “It allows us to have greater interaction so we can follow up. Some many times in the past a victim goes to Greenville and it may be a week before we can coordinate an interview to get the sworn statement and evidence we need to go forward with a prosecution, so it will aid us in prosecution.”

“It will give us an opportunity to provide a greater level of security for the victim,” continues the Sheriff. “We are going to be asking for ankle monitoring for any offender whose victim is at the shelter, giving them piece of mind that this place is truly a safe place to stay.”

Sheriff Crenshaw said that deputies right now can start requesting ankle monitoring as a condition of bond and it has been already been utilized in drug cases. Sheriff Crenshaw said that if there is violence or the threat of violence, then the Sheriff’s Office can and will ask that those offenders be required to wear an ankle monitor.

Sheriff Crenshaw also praised not only the work of those involved in getting a domestic violence shelter in Oconee County, but for the citizens of Oconee County as well.

“March of 2013 we needed $990,000 and I am committed to it because we needed this shelter in place for our county. Once we got talking about it, people opened their hearts and they did it because they care.”

It was announced this morning that the capital campaign raised more than $1.1 million dollars for the purchase of the shelter and for three years of operating costs.

Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Arrests Westminster Man on Kidnapping, CDV, Weapons Charges

Douglas Ray Holden

Douglas Ray Holden

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

(Walhalla, SC)——————————The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office has arrested and charged a Westminster man with Kidnapping, Criminal Domestic Violence of a High and Aggravated Nature, and Possession of a Weapon During Commission of a Violent Crime after an incident that occurred yesterday at an Oconee County business.

58 year old Douglas Ray Holden of 445 Jenkins Bridge Road was booked into the Oconee County Detention Center yesterday around 2:33pm after being taken into custody at the Georgia – South Carolina line on Highway 76. Holden had a bond hearing this afternoon, in which his total surety bond amount was set at $450,000. If Holden makes bond, he will have to wear an ankle monitor and has been ordered not to have any contact with the victim or the family.

Oconee County Sheriff’s Office dispatchers received a call around 12:23pm yesterday from a third party indicating a woman, identified as the wife of Holden whom she is separated from, had texted him, indicating that a man, identified as Holden, had taken her at gunpoint from Schneider Electric on Sandifer Boulevard and assaulted her. The third party told dispatchers that she told him that she did not know where she was and was in the bathroom when she texted.

Yesterday afternoon, several officers responded to the state line in regards to the incident. One of the deputies made contact with the brother of Holden and Holden called the deputy back by phone. Holden told deputies that he and the victim were in Clayton, Georgia shopping and that the victim was okay. The deputy spoke with the victim, who said she was okay but seemed reluctant to speak and seemed scared. Holden agreed to meet the deputies at the Georgia-South Carolina line.

Deputies later met both the suspect and victim on Highway 76. The victim told deputies that the Holden pulled up in front of her car at her workplace, Schneider Electric, got out of his truck, placed a gun to her chest and made threats against her and then would take his own life. The suspect also made threats against an individual he said she was seeing. The victim reportedly gave Holden a fake name. The victim got into Holden’s truck and noticed the door lock was duct taped, preventing her from leaving. Holden then reportedly assaulted her by hitting her with the gun. Warrants also indicate that at some point in time Holden struck the victim on the face with his hand at a location on Hillside Drive in Westminster. Both parties then went to the location on Jenkins Bridge Road, where the victim was later able to text the third party about what was going on. She told deputies that he made her go to Clayton, GA to go shopping.

Due to the visual evidence of the injuries to the victim, deputies placed Holden under arrest and his vehicle was inventoried. During this inventory, two firearms were discovered in the tool box, plus a roll of duct tape was found in the back seat. Fresh blood was also located in the vehicle as well.