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South Carolina Grandmother Accused Of Helping Grandson Cover Up Murder
Ryan O'Neil Woodruff allegedly shot and killed Ty'Quez Walker at his grandmother's residence while he was out on bond for killing two family members, according to the Georgetown County Sheriff's Office.
A South Carolina man is now accused of a third killing, while out on bond and awaiting trial for two May 2021 murders, and deputies said his grandmother witnessed the latest crime, and helped him cover it up.
Ryan O’Neil Woodruff, 30, was arrested for the deadly shooting of Ty’Quez De’Metrius Walker, 18, at his grandmother’s residence on Meadow Street in Georgetown on Jan. 24, according to a Georgetown County Sheriff’s Office press release. Deputies said multiple witnesses heard shots fired and saw "an unidentified group of people” running away from the scene around 11:30 p.m. Woodruff was later taken into custody.
Edna Faye Daniels, 78, was arrested on Friday. According to an arrest warrant affidavit obtained by Oxygen.com, Daniels “did knowingly and willfully take overt action(s) to orchestrate, facilitate, and/or participate in the concealment of a murder committed by her grandson (Ryan O’Neil Woodruff) that occurred inside the Defendant’s residence and in the presence of the Defendant.”
She’s currently facing charges of obstruction of justice and accessory after the fact to murder.
“There are consequences for lying to police during a criminal investigation,” the sheriff said in a press release.
At the time of Walker's shooting, Woodruff was out on bond after being charged in the May 2021 murders of Debra Goins and Roger Woodruff Sr. on Graham Road in Georgetown, according to deputies. Neighbors found their bodies during a welfare check, according to a press release. Woodruff was a relative of the victims, who both suffered multiple blunt force trauma wounds to their heads, and was living with them at the time of the murders.
Woodruff’s girlfriend, Alecia Renee Childers, 31, was also arrested on two counts of murder in June 2021 for the murders of Goins and Woodruff Sr., according to Charleston CBS station WCSC. Woodruff is charged with two counts of murder, in addition to attempted murder for allegedly bludgeoning Childers in the head hours after the double murder.
The family of Ty’Quez Walker released balloons and had a candlelight vigil in his honor Tuesday night. His funeral was held Wednesday.
“Ryan probably pulled the trigger, but the justice system in Georgetown killed my son,” Walker’s mother, Seccoya Middleton, told Myrtle Beach NBC station WMBF. “Angry? Past angry. We’ll not make him a statistic. No. Yes, a mother, a father, a strong background, a good family behind him. All he wanted to do is get his tattoo fixed. That’s it! That’s it!”
A Georgetown County law enforcement officer said it’s common to see people out on bond for murder charges.
“This turned out really, really bad,” 15th Circuit Solicitor Jimmy Richardson told WMBF. “You are sad, you don’t want anything like that to happen. I’m sure the defense attorney didn’t want this to happen — nobody wants to see another person lose their life.”
Richardson oversaw Woodruff’s 2021 bond hearing for the double murder. The original bond was denied, but at a second hearing, Woodruff was granted a $100,000 bond.
“There’s nothing I can change,” Richardson told WMBF. “We told [the judge] about the double homicide. We told him about the facts of the case. We told him about everything that made us believe that he was a danger.”
Richardson hopes state lawmakers pass tougher laws on murder bonds.
“I am in favor of bond reform,” Richardson told WMBF. “We’ve had a little bit of bond reform that says if you are out on a violent crime, a magistrate can’t set the next bond. But it would be hard to legislate to say absolutely no bond if you’re charged with murder.”
South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster is also advocating for denying bond for repeat criminals, and even mentioned it in his State of the State address on Jan. 25.
“Those who commit a crime while out on bond should receive an automatic mandatory five-year sentence with no early release or parole — on top of the sentence for their previous crimes,” McMaster said in the address, according to Myrtle Beach ABC station WPDE.
Both Daniels and Woodruff are still in the Georgetown County Detention Center, and no bond has been set for either, according to jail records reviewed by Oxygen.com.
The Georgetown County Sheriff’s office told WMBF Woodruff’s bond hearing will be in general session months from now.
Anyone with any information on the murders is asked to call the sheriff’s office at 843-546-5102.