Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Releases Information on Two Shootings from Earlier Today

Oconee County Sheriff Mike Crenshaw

Oconee County Sheriff Mike Crenshaw

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

(Walhalla, SC)——————————————–Oconee County Sheriff Mike Crenshaw says that the Sheriff’s Office is reporting two shootings that occurred this morning in Oconee County, including one that involved a Sheriff’s Office Deputy that has been turned over to the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division.

Sheriff Crenshaw says that the 911 Communications Center received a call of multiple shots fired into a residence on Brock Road during the night. One victim received one gunshot wound to the shoulder and was transported by paramedics. As a result of the investigation, deputies were able to obtain the identity of the shooter.

Sheriff’s investigators were notified around 2:00a.m. this morning and began the process of obtaining a search warrant along with arrest warrants that include multiple counts of attempted murder and began to set up a perimeter around the suspect’s home. The suspect, according to Sheriff Crenshaw, left the residence with a passenger inside. Both individuals in the vehicle were white males.

The investigators activated their blue lights and sirens and tried to initiate a traffic stop but the suspect would not pull over and a short pursuit began, according to Sheriff Crenshaw. The vehicle came to a stop in the middle of Blackjack Road near Greenfield Road which was approximately three to four miles from the suspect residence.

According to Sheriff Crenshaw, shots were fired from inside of the vehicle and one deputy returned fire into the vehicle. The passenger and the suspect both sustained gunshot wounds; however, investigators believe at this time that the passenger was struck from gunfire inside of the vehicle while SLED is making a determination on how the suspect was struck by gunfire.

The passenger and the suspect were both transported to receive medical treatment. The Sheriff’s Office does not believe any threats currently exist that would endanger the public.

“Due to the fact of the ongoing SLED investigation, the Sheriff’s Office will not be releasing any suspect, victim, or deputy involved information until SLED has determined it would not interfere in their investigation,” according to Sheriff Crenshaw. “The Sheriff’s Office has obtained arrest warrants against the suspect in the Brock Road shooting and we will release that information once the investigation is complete. The deputy has been placed on administrative leave while the investigation is ongoing.”

Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Arrests Upstate Woman on Grand Larceny Warrant

Linda Jane Lyle

Linda Jane Lyle

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

(Walhalla, SC)———————————The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office arrested an Upstate woman earlier today on an outstanding Grand Larceny warrant.

60 year old Linda Jane Lyle was booked into the Oconee County Detention Center around 1:25am. The Detention Center lists Lyle’s address as Martin Road in Starr, SC while the arrest warrants lists her address at Michelle Lane in Seneca.

Lyle was booked in by a deputy from the Uniform Patrol Division after the deputy picked Lyle up at the Townville Post Office from the custody of the South Carolina Highway Patrol after the Sheriff’s Office was notified that troopers were out with Lyle and that Lyle had the outstanding warrant.

On April 24th of 2016, a deputy from the Uniform Patrol Division was informed by a victim of a larceny that occurred on Butts Farm Road near Westminster. The victim stated that some jewelry had been stolen and that Lyle had been a house sitter at the residence.

The case was turned over to the Criminal Investigations Division. As the investigation continued, it was determined based upon the evidence that Lyle had stolen not only the jewelry but other items in the home and had sold those items, which were eventually identified by the victims.

Based upon the evidence gathered, an arrest warrants charging Lyle with Grand Larceny was obtained by the investigator.

Lyle was released from the Detention Center earlier today on a $5,000 personal recognizance bond.

Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Sergeant David Smith Named President of Tri-State Law Enforcement Association

Sergeant David Smith

Sergeant David Smith

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

(Walhalla, SC)————————————-Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Sergeant David Smith was named President of the Tri-State Law Enforcement Association during a meeting in December of last year.

Smith, who is an investigator in the Criminal Investigation Division, has worked in law enforcement for almost 30 years. Smith began his career in April of 1987 with the Seneca Police Department and then began his employment in August of 1988 with the Sheriff’s Office.

The Tri-State Law Enforcement Association is made of counties that border Oconee County in North Carolina, Georgia and South Carolina. The meetings are held to discuss law enforcement issues, to network and to share cases and information to help all agencies solve and prevent crimes in their respective counties and cities.

“Oconee County is one of the few counties that border 10 other counties,” says Oconee County Sheriff Mike Crenshaw. “Oconee is bordered in South Carolina by Pickens and Anderson Counties, by Macon, Jackson and Transylvania Counties in North Carolina and by Rabun, Stephens, Habersham and Franklin Counties in Georgia. Also, we have a major interstate and major US and state highways that run in and through our county and others that border us. With the mobility of people to move around, crime does not set up camp in one county and stays there. This is why the Tri-State Law Enforcement Association is so important in helping all of law enforcement partners to solve crime and build partnerships that benefit all of our citizens. We are proud that Sgt. Smith is the President of this important organization.”

The Association traces its roots back to the mid-1960’s, according to retired Oconee County Sheriff Earl Holcombe, when a group of officers got together for coffee to discuss a string of robberies that had occurred across state lines. The Association grew from there, according to Holcombe.

The Tri-State Law Enforcement Association meets bi-monthly on the first Thursday of those months. The meetings rotate between agencies in North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia.

Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Files Additional Charges against Westminster Man Arrested in Wednesday Morning Traffic Stop

Matthew Blake Sosby

Matthew Blake Sosby

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

(Walhalla, SC)————————————The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office filed additional charges yesterday against a Westminster man arrested early Wednesday morning after a traffic stop.

43 year old Matthew Blake Sosby was booked into the Oconee County Detention Center around 4:17am and charged with Possession of a Weapon by a Person Convicted of a Violent Felony and Possession with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine. The arrest warrants obtained against Sosby on Wednesday list his address at Moore Hill Road while the new arrest warrants list Sosby’s address at Edgewater Drive.

A deputy from the Uniform Patrol Division initiated a traffic stop on a maroon Toyota Tacoma on E. Bennett Road and after receiving consent to search the vehicle, discovered a quantity of narcotics and two firearms. The deputy was notified by dispatch that Sosby was prohibited from possessing firearms the morning of the traffic stop.

Sosby was given a combined $75,000 surety bond and the Sheriff’s Office continued their investigation.

Sosby was also charged for a violation of his probation and was given a $25,000 surety bond on that charge.

As the investigation continued, it was determined that one of the firearms discovered as a result of the traffic stop, an antique brass flintlock pistol, was stolen. The pistol is valued at $4,000.

Based on that information, an investigator from the Criminal Investigations Division obtained an arrest warrant against Sosby on charges of Receiving Stolen Goods.

Meanwhile, investigators determined, based upon evidence obtained in a separate investigation by the Criminal Investigations Division that Sosby broke into a residence on Edgewater Drive in Westminster sometime between October 9th and October 16th of 2016.

Investigators also determined that Sosby carried away, according to arrest warrants, a multitude of firearms, including some collectible antique firearms, with a value of around $250,000.

Based upon that evidence, Sosby has been charged in arrest warrants by investigators with one count of First Degree Burglary and one count of Grand Larceny with a value of $10,000 or more.

The antique firearm discovered during the traffic stop belonged to the individual who residence was broken into on Edgewater Drive. So far, five of the firearms taken from the Edgewater Drive address have been recovered by investigators.

Sosby was denied bond on the three newest charges against him. A hold has also been placed on Sosby by the US Marshals Service.

The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office is continuing their investigation.

Northside Elementary School Collecting Donations for Safe Harbor in Memory of Chrissy Adams

Northside Flyer

(Walhalla, SC)—————————-Northside Elementary School in Seneca is currently collecting donations for Safe Harbor in memory of the late 10th Circuit Solicitor Chrissy Adams.
The donations of paper products, laundry detergent pods, dishwasher detergent pods and liquid hand soap will be collected at the school thru February 22nd.
Students may bring items to their classroom or items may be dropped off at the school office located at 710 N. Townville Street in Seneca.
For more information, contact Northside Elementary School.

Lake and Mountain Quilters Guild Provides Quilts to Oconee County Sheriff’s Office

From L-R: Sandy Hawkins and Nancy Porter

From L-R: Sandy Hawkins and Nancy Porter

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

(Walhalla, SC)——————————————Quilting has for many years been a great tradition here in the Golden Corner and quilters from a local quilter’s guild have donated some of their creations to the Oconee County Sheriff’s Office to assist citizens in our county.

“This is another tool in our proverbial toolbox that we can use to comfort and help the citizens of our county,” says Oconee County Sheriff Mike Crenshaw. “The Sheriff’s Office is very appreciative of this donation.”

The Comfort Quilt Committee of the Lake and Mountain Quilt Guild has collected quilts from members and has distributed them to various charities and organizations, including GHS Lila Doyle, the children’s area at Oconee Memorial Hospital, the Cottingham Hospice House, Helping Hands and Safe Harbor.

Now, those creations have made their way into the vehicles of the Uniform Patrol Division to provide comfort to children and families as officers respond to calls for service.

On Tuesday of this week, Nancy Porter and Sandy Hawkins brought by two bags of quilts to go along with those who have been donated already. To Nancy, Sandy and the rest of the Quilters Guild, it is a way to give back to their community and to help those who are in need.

Nancy and Sandy said that they had learned that in some cases when law enforcement responds to calls, there are sometimes children and families that could be displaced or may have to leave their homes for some reason, including those time when the weather turns cold.

Therefore, the Comfort Quilt Committee wanted keep those families and children as warm and as comfortable as possible and initially donated five quilts to place in the Uniform Patrol Vehicles.

The goal, according to Nancy and Sandy, is to have quilts in all patrol vehicles for the 35 Uniform Patrol Deputies of the Sheriff’s Office. According to Nancy and Sandy, two comfort quilts a week can be made.

The Mission Statement from the Lake and Mountain Quilters Guild reads as follows: “We are committed to preserving and continuing the traditions, culture and history of quilting in Anderson, Oconee and Pickens Counties here in the Golden Corner of northwestern South Carolina.”

The Lake and Mountain Quilters Guild, which traces its roots back to the 1980’s, meets the first Monday of each month at 7pm at the Episcopal Church of the Ascension at 214 North Hampton Road in Seneca.

For more information about the Lake and Mountain Quilters Guild, visit their website at LMQG.org or visit their Facebook page.

Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Seeking the Public’s Help in Regards to January 2017 Lowe’s Shoplifting

Lowe's Shoplifting - January 9th, 2017 (1)

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

(Walhalla, SC)——————————————The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office is seeking the public’s help in solving a January 2017 shoplifting that occurred at the Seneca location of Lowe’s at BI-LO Place.

The Sheriff’s Office is also seeking the public’s help in identifying two individuals, a white male and a white female, in relation to the incident.

A deputy from the Uniform Patrol Division responded to the store location on January 9th in relation to a shoplifting that occurred on January 6th in which, according to a store employee, a white male and a white female were observed taking a Dewalt Impact Driver set and a Dewalt Hammer Drive set. The combined total value of the items taken is approximately is $258.

The white female in question is seen wearing a white hoodie and black leggings and she is observed walking out of the store with the items. Before that, a white male is observed to helping her pick out the items.

The male was observed leaving the store, whereupon a short time later, the female was seen getting into an older model white in color SUV.

If you have any information concerning this January 6th, 2017 shoplifting at the Lowe’s location at BI-LO place in Seneca or the identity of the two individuals in relation to this incident, you are asked to call Crimestoppers at 1-888-CRIME-SC or 864-638-STOP. You don’t have to give your name when you call Crimestoppers and all information given is confidential. If your information leads to an arrest and/or the correct identity of the individuals in questions, you could be eligible for a cash reward.

Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Arrests Westminster Woman on Charges of Attempting to Purchase Pseudoephedrine above the Legal Limit

Robin Elaine Miller

Robin Elaine Miller

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

(Walhalla, SC)————————————-The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office arrested a Westminster woman yesterday on charges of Attempting to Purchase Pseudoephedrine above the Legal Limit.

47 year old Robin Elaine Miller was booked into the Oconee County Detention Center around 10:20pm. Miller was released from the Detention Center earlier today on a $2,500 personal recognizance bond.

An agent from the Narcotics Division of the Sheriff’s Office began an investigation on November 15th, 2016 after receiving information that Miller had attempted to purchase Pseudoephedrine above the legal limit of 9 grams within a 30 day period. On October 17th of last year, Miller’s attempt to purchase Pseudoephedrine was blocked.

Based upon information discovered during the investigation, the agent was able to obtain an arrest warrant against Miller on November 18th of last year.

Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Arrests Westminster Man on Drug and Weapons Charges

Matthew Blake Sosby

Matthew Blake Sosby

By: Jimmy Watt
Public Information Officer

(Walhalla, SC)————————————The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office arrested a Westminster man earlier this morning after a traffic stop on drugs and weapons charges.

43 year old Matthew Black Sosby of Moore Hill Road was booked into the Oconee County Detention Center around 4:17am on a Temporary Custody Order until warrants were obtained today.

A deputy from the Uniform Patrol Division on routine patrol on Plant Road in Westminster observed a maroon Toyota Tacoma go left of center on a double yellow line and initiated a traffic stop on the vehicle on E. Bennett Road.

The deputy observed the driver, Sosby, to be acting nervously. When asked by the deputy, Sosby gave consent to search the vehicle, whereupon, the deputy discovered narcotics and a two firearms.

The deputy was notified by dispatch that Sosby was prohibited from possessing firearms.

Sosby was placed under arrest and transported to the Detention Center. Warrants obtained against Sosby today charge him with Possession of a Weapon by a Person Convicted of a Violent Felony and Possession with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine.

As of 2pm today, Sosby remains in custody at the Detention Center on a combined $75,000 surety bond.

The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office is continuing their investigation.

Salem Man Enters Guilty Plea in Federal Court on Firearms Charge

On supervised release at the time, Crenshaw possessed and discharged a firearm at residence in Oconee County

Justin David Crenshaw

Justin David Crenshaw

Release Courtesy of Lance Crick
First Assistant US Attorney

Columbia, South Carolina –——- United States Attorney Beth Drake, announced today that Justin David Crenshaw, age 31, of Salem, entered a guilty plea in federal court this morning in Greenville on charges stemming from his possession and discharge of a firearm last fall at a residence in Oconee County.

United States Magistrate Judge Kevin F. McDonald accepted the plea. Crenshaw will be sentenced after a presentence investigation report is prepared by United States Probation.

Crenshaw was previously indicted on December 13, 2016, by a federal grand jury for felon in possession of ammunition, a violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 922(g)(1). Prior to his indictment, Crenshaw, whose conduct at the time of the offense was being supervised by United States Probation following his summertime release from the Bureau of Prisons, was arrested on federal arrest warrants in early December for the offense and has remained in custody, detained without bond, since that date.

The facts presented by the government at the guilty plea hearing this morning established that on October 25, 2016, Crenshaw and a colleague entered a residence in Oconee County and initiated a physical assault on a male located in the residence. The male ran outside the house followed by Crenshaw who then fired two rounds during the altercation. Deputies recovered two 9mm ammunition casings from the site of the incident. When interviewed, Crenshaw admitted firing the shots.

The investigation was conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) with the assistance and cooperation of the Oconee County Sheriff’s Office.

The case has been assigned to First Assistant United States Attorney Lance Crick for prosecution.