Brandon’s advice: State drops case to Conway, SC bank murder


South Carolina has dropped the charges against the man who killed two Conway CresCom bank employees.

The move came after a federal jury found Brandon’s Council guilty of the Katie Skeen and Donna Major murders in 2017 and sentenced him to death. The 15th judicial circuit prosecutor’s office announced its decision on Tuesday.

State charges could be reinstated at a later date.

After the council’s death sentence, a federal judge told his lawyers they had 14 days to file any post-trial petition or appeal. The defense immediately requested an extension, but the judge denied the request. The defense has since asked the judge to reconsider this decision. The judge agreed to move the deadline for post-trial filings to mid-November.

Council is being held in a short-term federal prison in Oklahoma City, according to Bureau of Prison records.

A three-week trial included a plethora of evidence against the board, including video from inside the bank.

On August 21, 2017, Council attended the 16th Avenue branch and approached the Major at the counter. He waited about 45 seconds before pulling out a gun and shooting Major twice.

Skeen yelled in her next office and the Council ran over to her. The Council shot Skeen at close range and killed her.

Council then ran over to Major, who was on the floor behind the counter and shot him in the head. He then robbed the bank.

The council stole Skeen’s car from the parking lot and fled to North Carolina, where he picked up a prostitute and stayed in a hotel. The next day, he asked a stranger to buy a car with the money from the theft.

On August 23, 2017, police arrested Council outside a hotel in Greenville, North Carolina. FBI investigators spoke to Council, which detailed his criminal insanity and reasoning. When the police searched the council car, they found numerous items from the theft, including the gun, bank money and the clothes he was wearing.

This story was originally published October 29, 2019 10:50 am.

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Alex Lang is the True Crime reporter for The Sun News covering the legal system and the impact of crime on local residents. He says letting residents know if they are safe is a vital role of a newspaper. Alex covered the crime in Detroit, Iowa, New York, West Virginia and now in Horry County.

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