Man who beat woman with axe handle in Berkeley County gets 30-year-prison sentence, will serve 15

February 24, 2017 GMT

A jury in Berkeley County has convicted a man of kidnapping, second-degree burglary and assault and battery after he severely beat a woman with an axe handle.

Judge Kristi Lea Harrington sentenced Kevin Daniel Driggers, a resident of U.S. Highway 17 in Bonneau, to 30 years in prison on Thursday, according to the 9th Circuit Solicitor’s Office. The sentenced will be suspended after he serves 15 years.

“Driggers and the victim had been in a romantic relationship for two years leading up to the assault,” the Solicitor’s Office said. “Two months prior to the beating, the victim had broken up with Driggers. In an attempt to resume the relationship, Driggers had been calling her incessantly.”

On Nov. 4, 2015, Driggers broke into a home on Upton Road in St. Stephen, the Solicitor’s Office said. He at first tried to beat down the rear door of the home.

“Despite breaking the hinges off the door, he was unable to enter due to the victim bracing herself between the door and a washing machine,” the Solicitor’s Office said.

The victim’s 14-year-old son fled through the front door with a 5-year-old boy who also lived with them to try and get help while the woman stayed behind to try and keep Driggers out, the Solicitor’s Office said. He eventually broke in through a bedroom window and the woman ran for the front door.

“Driggers caught up to her and slammed the axe handle into the back of her head, causing her to fall to the ground,” the Solicitor’s Office said. ”(He) proceeded to beat the victim using the axe handle, as well as stomping and kicking her body while she lay on the ground with blood pouring out of the back of her head. Neighbors witnessed Driggers pinning the victim on the ground while beating her with the axe handle, dragging her across the yard, and threatening to kill her.”

Before authorities arrived, Driggers also tried to rip out one of the woman’s eyes, the Solicitor’s Office said. A corporal with the Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office arrived 5 minutes after a 911 call went out and saw Driggers, armed with the axe handle, chasing the woman.

The corporal ordered Driggers to the ground at gunpoint, the Solicitor’s Office said.

Driggers has two prior domestic violence convictions including a 2015 case that involved the current victim and her son, the Solicitor’s Office said. He has been convicted of assault and battery seven times in addition to resisting arrest, threatening the life of a public official, public disorderly conduct and petty larceny.