Attorney General Wilson Announces Six Plead Guilty as Part of Theft Ring

(COLUMBIA, S.C.) – August 1, 2018 – South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson announces that six individuals pleaded guilty this week for their roles in the theft and sale of nearly $400,000 worth of personal property stolen from victims in Marlboro County.

Among those that entered pleas are:

  • Christopher Jermaine Carter of Bennettsville, SC, who pleaded guilty to one count of Grand Larceny over $10,000, four counts Grand Larceny value over $2,000 but less than $10,000, one count Burglary-Third Degree, and one count Criminal Conspiracy;
  • Jamie Truett Gray of Bennettsville, SC who pleaded guilty to nine counts Grand Larceny value over $10,000, one count Grand Larceny value over $2,000 but less than $10,000, and one count Receiving Stolen Goods value over $10,000;
  • Michael Wayne Summerford of Latta, SC, who pleaded guilty to one count Receiving Stolen Goods value over $2,000 but less than $10,000;
  • Sandy Carson Miller of Chesterfield, SC, who pleaded guilty to one count Receiving Stolen Goods value over $2,000 but less than $10,000;
  • Wilbur David Berry of Latta, SC, who pleaded guilty to one count Receiving Stolen Goods value over $2,000 but less than $10,000; and
  • Johnny Walker Britt of Bennettsville, SC, who pleaded guilty to one count Receiving Stolen Goods value over $10,000, one count Accessory After the Fact of a Felony, and one count Criminal Conspiracy.

The Honorable Roger E. Henderson accepted the pleas of Carter and Summerford on Monday, July 30, 2018 and Gray, Miller, Berry, and Britt on Wednesday, August 1, 2018. Due to Carter and Gray’s major roles in the theft ring, sentencing related to their guilty pleas was deferred until the conclusion of the prosecution of remaining co-defendants. Summerford received a sentence of 18 months suspended to one year probation. Miller received a sentence of three years suspended to one year probation, Berry received a sentence of one year suspended to one year probation, and Britt received a sentence of three years suspended to 90 days active sentence followed by three years’ probation.

All of the conduct related to these charges occurred in Marlboro County between 2007 and 2017. During this time, there were over a dozen thefts throughout Marlboro County as well as the surrounding Pee Dee region. They remained unsolved until an anonymous tip regarding a suspicious tractor hidden in a wooded area in Bennettsville. That tractor was was found to be stolen. That led investigators to connecting several of the named defendants to the unsolved thefts, after the majority of the suspects confessed to the crimes when confronted with the evidence against them.

Items stolen included several tractors, trailers, large farm equipment, ATV/UTVs, and other various heavy equipment.  As a result of the investigation, most of the stolen property was recovered in the execution of search warrants on suspects’ property in Marlboro County, as well as several pieces that were recovered after being sold to an individual in Columbus County, North Carolina.

These cases were investigated by Marlboro County Sheriff Charles Lemon’s office by Investigators Jamie Seales and Robert White and were prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Sam Jones.

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