Money a Likely Motive in Hanahan Killing
Chief: Suspects were doing drugs together, thought Bennett had cash.
Investigators believe that the three suspects in Sunday's Hanahan homicide had been using drugs together and decided to attack the victim in an attempt to get money, according to Hanahan Police Chief Mike Cochran.
The body of Roy Ray Bennett, 71, was found at 1 p.m. Sunday with his hands and feet tied to a bed with duct tape and a bag over his head. Berkeley County Coroner Bill Salisbury has not released a cause of death.
In a brief hearing Friday morning, bond was denied for Robert Randolph Clark, 39, Robert Andrew McFadden, 24, and Brittany Lynn Swagner, 24. Clark refused to appear at the bond hearing.
Cochran said afterwards that it is believed the three were doing crack cocaine and decided to try to get money from Bennett, who Cochran referred to as a "friend of a friend" of one of the suspects.
Police had been holding Clark since Monday because of tattooes that matched a description from a witness who saw two men getting into Bennett's truck before the victim's body was found.
The discovery of Bennett's truck Tuesday, led to video footage of McFadden abandoning the vehicle at the Goose Creek Walmart. McFadden was brought in Wednesday and led police to Swagner.
Interviews with the suspects led to another Walmart surveillance video — this one on Rivers Avenue — that allegedly shows Clark and McFadden shoplifting several items, including duct tape.
"The video evidence was crucial," Cochran said. "You can solve it with legwork, but good video makes legwork easier. And the tattooes — they are as good as fingerprints, but you can see them and really identify them."
The three suspects are expected to appear in court again Sept. 7.