One Christmas Day shooting suspect in custody, first appearance hearing Thursday in Sumter


One of the suspects in a nonfatal Christmas Day shooting at a convenience store is facing an attempted murder charge after he was taken into custody Wednesday night, according to county authorities.

Sumter County Sheriff’s Office deputies arrested 17-year-old Faquanta Benjamin, of Chanson Lane, in connection to a shooting incident at the El Cheapo convenience store on U.S. 378 across from Shaw Air Force Base, said Ken Bell, public information officer for the sheriff's office.

About 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Benjamin and another man entered the store and got into an argument with a third person, a 20-year-old man, inside of the store, he said.

The argument escalated outside, he said, when one of the men pulled out a weapon, shot the victim in the lower body and fled.

Bell said the victim was taken to a Columbia hospital where he was last listed in stable condition.

A second suspect is currently being sought, he said.

Benjamin’s first appearance hearing is scheduled for 2 p.m. Thursday at Sumter-Lee Regional Detention Center at 1250 Winkles Road in Sumter.