2017: The Sumter Item's year in review

FROM STAFF REPORTS
Posted 12/29/17

The year that was 2017 is about to wrap up with a bang of confetti Sunday, and while there is much to look ahead to in 2018, The Sumter Item is taking a look back at the top 10 most-read stories we ran this year, based on what you clicked on at …

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2017: The Sumter Item's year in review

Four F-16 Vipers assigned to the 20th Fighter Wing, Shaw Air Force Base, fly over the South Carolina coast as part of a past Salute from the Shore tribute.
Four F-16 Vipers assigned to the 20th Fighter Wing, Shaw Air Force Base, fly over the South Carolina coast as part of a past Salute from the Shore tribute.
SUMTER ITEM FILE PHOTO
Posted

The year that was 2017 is about to wrap up with a bang of confetti Sunday, and while there is much to look ahead to in 2018, The Sumter Item is taking a look back at the top 10 most-read stories we ran this year, based on what you clicked on at theitem.com.

See the top five most-read stories in Sunday's paper.

10. Body of drowning victim identified

Tuesday, June 13

From staff reports

Capt. Robert McCollough of South Carolina Department of Natural Resources Law Enforcement Division has confirmed the body of a drowning victim was recovered at 10:15 a.m. today. The victim has been identified as 27-year-old Marquille Kenyata Miller of Dalzell.

The DNR dive team began searching Tuesday night for a man who fell out of a boat near Pack's Landing on Lake Marion in Sumter County.

McCollough said initial reports are the boat was in a canal near the landing and may have hit a stump or a log, causing the man to fall out of the boat. He said it is not known if the man was wearing a life jacket. Boaters are required to have a life jacket available but are not required to wear them, McCollough said.

"We encourage boaters to wear them," he said.

9. Sumter Police arrest 18-year-old for allegedly shooting teen girl

Monday, Oct. 2

From staff reports

Sumter Police Department arrested an 18-year-old man Monday for allegedly shooting a 15-year-old girl at a Flamingo Road residence just before 10 p.m. Sunday.

According to a news release from the department, the victim was shot after she exited a house on Flamingo Road while the shooting suspect, Jayshawn D. Easterling, of 660 Flamingo Road, and two other teens were talking on the porch.

The release refers to Easterling as an acquaintance of the victim.

The victim told officers that she felt something hit her back as she was walking down the porch steps and then saw the suspect run away from the residence.

The victim, whose name is being withheld because of her age, was taken to Palmetto Health Tuomey with a gunshot wound and was later transferred to Palmetto Health Richland in Columbia, where she is in stable condition.

Easterling and the two other teens were later located and questioned by police.

The release states that Easterling, who was out on bond on an unrelated charge filed in January, was arrested and charged with attempted murder. He is being held at Sumter-Lee Regional Detention Center pending bond.

The investigation is ongoing.

8. 20-year-old victim of Friday morning fatal stabbing identified

Friday, March 10

From staff reports

Sumter County Coroner Robbie Baker identified the victim of a fatal stabbing that occurred at 365 Rolling Creek Drive about 8 a.m. today as 20-year-old Desjuan Lemon of Sumter.

Sumter Police Department detectives are working to determine what led to the stabbing of Lemon, who lived with his girlfriend, Anastasia Brejean Singleton, 19. According to a news release from police, the incident appears to have started with an argument that turned physical.

Lemon was transported by EMS to Palmetto Health Tuomey, where he died.

Singleton, 19, was taken into custody and charged with murder. She is being held at Sumter-Lee Regional Detention Center.

An autopsy is scheduled for Sunday.

Additional information will be released as it is provided to The Sumter Item.

7. 4 Sumter men arrested in connection with armed robberies

Friday, Dec. 22

From staff reports

Sumter Police have arrested four Sumter men in connection with a string of armed robberies which began Aug. 8 at the Bojangles' on Broad Street, according to a news release from the department.

The robberies continued in August when Star Barbershop, Gentlemen's Barbershop and Rollerson Package Store were hit. Peanut Enterprise was struck by an armed robber on Sept. 13 during which one person was assaulted and injured. The last incident happened Dec. 5 when a man was robbed and shot in the parking lot of Miller Arms apartments. The 31-year-old victim is still recovering.

According to the release, officers were able to develop information that connected the men to the Miller Arms case and their individual roles in the other cases. One of the suspects acted alone in two of the previous armed robberies.

Each of the suspects faces multiple charges ranging from conspiracy to attempted murder. All are being held at Sumter-Lee Regional Detention Center where bond was denied on Friday morning.

Charged are:

Additional charges are expected.

Items reported stolen in all of the cases included cash, jewelry and cellphones.

"The greatest contributing factors in solving these crimes have been the hard, dedicated work of the Investigative Services Division and the strong partnership the department has developed over the years with the citizens of the Sumter community," Chief Russell F. Roark III stated in the release. "The support displayed through community involvement has helped tremendously in solving crimes that would otherwise have been difficult to do so."

"This is an example of how trust between the community and the police can solve crimes," Roark said. "Thank you for supporting the Sumter Police Department."

6. Sumter High School student charged with assault and battery

Friday, Dec. 15

From staff reports

A Sumter High School student has been charged with assault and battery, third degree, and disturbing schools after an incident at Sumter High School on Thursday.

According to a news release from Sumter Police Department, 19-year-old Nason Samuel Smith of 3570 Leonard Brown Road was booked at Sumter-Lee Regional Detention Center and later released on $1,000 bond.

An 18-year-old student was struck several times about the head in the school hallway before the suspect was controlled by a student and teacher, according to the release. The victim did not fight back.

An investigation is continuing.