ALLENDALE, SC (April 5, 2017) – An Allendale County man was convicted Wednesday and sentenced to 35 years in prison for the 2015 shooting death of a romantic rival.
The jury deliberated less than 30 minutes before convicting Jaycoby Terreak Williams, 30, of murder in the May 26, 2015, slaying of James Spellman, who was 29 at the time of his death. Spellman was struck by a single gunshot while talking to a cousin outside of Allendale’s Pinewood Apartments, where his girlfriend lived.
The shooting was “a crime of opportunity,” according to Brian Hollen of the Fourteenth Circuit Solicitor’s Office, who prosecuted the case.
“The defendant and victim had been involved with the same person and had some feuds previously. This was an ongoing fight,” Hollen said. “Despite the fact it was broad daylight and despite the fact there were multiple witnesses standing around, Williams walked up and, without saying a word, fired a single shot.”
The bullet pierced Williams’ heart and lungs, Hollen said.
Although the murder weapon was never recovered, a ballistics expert from the South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division said the bullet was likely fired from a 40-caliber Smith & Wesson handgun.
Judge Perry Buckner III presided over the three-day trial and handed down the 35-year sentence.
Williams’ criminal history includes a 2015 conviction for misdemeanor marijuana possession in Allendale, and three 2010 felony convictions in Florida on drug possession and distribution charges.