Update: Intruder died of strangulation, autopsy shows

February 22nd, 2011 by Staff

WALTERBORO — A man who kicked in the front door of a family’s home Thursday night was strangled to death after the homeowner put him in a choke hold while waiting for police, Colleton County Coroner Richard Harvey said.

Harvey said Anthony Drayton, 37, of Walterboro was dead when police arrived at the single-story brick home at the end of Bethea Street and found him still in the homeowner’s grasp about 8:15 p.m.

The homeowner and his wife told police that the man rang the doorbell and then forced his way inside when the homeowner opened the door. Someone inside the house called 911 as the two men became locked in a struggle, according to an incident report.

“I was just protecting my house,” said the man, who asked not to be identified because he and his family fear retribution. “There’s nothing gratifying about this. Somebody’s grieving right now.”

Walterboro Police Chief Otis Rhodes said it will be up to the 14th Circuit Solicitor’s Office to determine if the homeowner will face charges but said there was nothing at this time to indicate he will be charged. A spokesman for the solicitor’s office said the case is under investigation and no decision has been made.

Drayton served about 16 years in prison after he was convicted of voluntary manslaughter in 1992 in connection with a fatal stabbing in Colleton County in November 1991. He was released in 2008, according to the S.C. Department of Probation, Parole and Pardon Services.

Rhodes said there was no known connection between Drayton and the residents of the Bethea Street home. He said they have not had any problems at that address in the past.

One Response

  1. Jay

    sound to me like he got what he deserved

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