3 men get life in prison for killing 4 people during robbery

February 24, 2022 GMT

ORANGEBURG, S.C. (AP) — Three men have been sentenced to life in prison in what prosecutors said was the killing of four people at a South Carolina home during a robbery over drugs.

An Orangeburg County jury deliberated about three hours Wednesday night before finding each of the men guilty of four counts of murder and other charges in the shooting at a Holly Hill home in July 2015, The Times and Democrat of Orangeburg reported.

The men were looking for the boyfriend of one of the victims and for drugs and shot everyone in the home before leaving, prosecutors said.

The girlfriend, Krystal Hutto. 28, was killed along with Shamekia Sanders, 17; Tamara Perry, 14; and Jerome Butler, 50. An 8-year-old boy was also shot but survived.

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“This was pure evil,” prosecutor David Osborne said Wednesday during closing arguments.

Defense attorneys said prosecutors didn’t have physical evidence linking the men to the shooting and the 8-year-old boy’s testimony about what happened that day was him repeating speculation from other people.

“The police cannot solve this case, they want you to,” said one of the defense attorneys Aimee Zmroczek,

The three men were tried at the same time. A fourth man charged with murder, Derrick Coleman, testified against the other defendants an prosecutors said they will deal with his charges later.

Luther Smith, Antly Scott and Robert Bailey will all have to serve their life sentences without parole.