Deputies: Scantily-clad man tries to fight deputies with candlestick
Stephen Laughter (Source: Anderson Co. Sheriff's Office)
Stephen Laughter and Summer Easter. (Source: Greenville Co. Sheriff's Office)
ANDERSON, SC (FOX Carolina) -
Deputies said they were investigating calls about a prowler and burglar in an Easley neighborhood when they encountered a man only wearing underwear and socks, who tried to use a candlestick as a gun.
Anderson County deputies said the first call came in about 1:30 a.m. Wednesday about a suspicious person on Berwick Court.
That same person was seen knocking on doors in the Mayfield Lake subdivision, according to deputies. They said the suspect broke into a Hunt Road man's workshop, grabbed a knife and tried to steal the victim's car. According to the incident report, the victim responded and yelled out to the suspect that he had a gun, then saw the alleged burglar walk out in his underwear.
The report said the victim made the burglar lay down on the floor, but when he said he needed the car because someone was trying to kill his kid, he let the man go.
More calls came in about a person ringing doorbells and trying to break into cars before deputies were sent to a home on Jala Lake Drive. Deputies said they arrived to find the suspect had thrown a shopvac through a glass door trying to break in.
But he did not make it inside the home and ran away from officers, who tried to stop him, deputies said. They said he kicked in the back door of another home and grabbed a 2-foot-long metal candlestick, wrapping a pair of jeans around it to make it look like a gun.
Deputies said he ran into the home's garage when the fake gun didn't work, getting into a brief struggle. The incident report said a deputy shot the man with a stun gun and took him into custody.
During his busy night, deputies said the man had numerous scrapes and scratches on him from running through briars.
Upon his arrest, the suspect gave several fake names but was confirmed to be Stephen Laughter, 39, of Pelzer, according to deputies.
Laughter was charged with burglary first degree, burglary (violent) second degree, housebreaking, grand larceny, two counts of malicious injury to real property, possession of a weapon during a violent crime and giving false information to law enforcement.
He was also served with a warrant for criminal domestic violence of a high and aggravated nature from June 27 when deputies said he tried to stab his girlfriend with a screwdriver, but ran off before deputies could arrest him.
Laughter is being held at the Anderson County jail after a judge denied him bond on several of his charges, deputies said.
According to deputies, Laughter is also wanted in connection with burglaries in Greenville County. At the time of the incident, deputies said Laughter was out on bond on an attempted murder charge in Greenville County as well.
Greenville County deputies said they have two burglary charges on Laughter since 2013. According to Jonathan Smith with the Greenville County Sheriff's Office, deputies were called to the home of Laughter's parents to investigate a burglary and theft.
As deputies responded they spotted Laughter, who ran into some woods and the woman jumped in a car, drove across the median, picked Laughter up and outran the deputy in the vehicle, Smith said.
Smith said the neighbor who reported the ATV theft followed Laughter and the woman. He said Laughter stuck a shotgun out of the moving vehicle and took a couple of shots at the man. No one was injured.
Smith said the woman, Summer Easter, was charged with burglary and petit larceny in connection with the theft at Laughter's parents house, interfering with police and negligent driving.
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