BEAUFORT, SC (November 6, 2019) – A Hilton Head Island man who shot a 17-year-old acquaintance in broad daylight as he walked along a busy pedestrian path in the town’s Coligny Circle area has been sentenced to 37 years in prison.
John Ira Duncan III, now 20, was found guilty this past May by a Beaufort County General Sessions Court jury in the killing of Dominique Williams. The jury of four men and eight women needed just 11 minutes to reach its verdict. Sentencing was delayed pending an evaluation of Duncan by a defense psychologist.
Sentences for murder in South Carolina range from 30 years to life imprisonment and must be served in their entirety.
Circuit Court Judge Brooks P. Goldsmith handed down the sentence.
Duncan was a 15-year-old juvenile when the shooting took place in late afternoon July 19, 2015, however a Family Court judge ruled in 2017 that he should be tried as an adult.
The case was prosecuted by 14th Circuit Solicitor Duffie Stone, who called 16 witnesses during two days of testimony in May.
Deputy Solicitor Sean Thornton and Assistant Solicitor Julie Butner assisted in the prosecution, which was conducted by the office’s Career Criminal Unit. That team prosecutes the circuit’s most violent and habitual offenders and has earned convictions against 342 of 356 defendants since its formation in late 2008.