SPARTANBURG, SC (WSPA) – A man accused of kidnapping, armed robbery and criminal sexual conduct charges following incidents in the city of Spartanburg Wednesday, was denied bond.
We reported Thursday that a man — later identified as Jamal Ryan Smith, 19, of Spartanburg — was detained and later charged following two business armed robberies and two sexual assaults Wednesday.
Smith was charged with five counts of kidnapping, five counts of armed robbery, five counts of possession of a weapon during a violent crime and three counts of criminal sexual conduct.
A packed room with victims and their families shedding tears while describing what they endured and listening to the other crimes Jamal Smith is accused of committing.
“He went in at gunpoint, took them to the back, took them to the back to the bathroom your honor, sexually assaulted them at gunpoint,” said Spartanburg County Solicitor, Barry Barnette.
One victim wrote she thought she was going to die when Smith allegedly pointed a gun at her head and sexually assaulted her.
“You invaded our daughter’s body, you had no right. This is unacceptable and we despise you for this. You’re sick, you need help, we pray you get it but this does not justify you for what you did,” said a Spartanburg County Magistrate Judge who read a statement from one of the victim’s parents.
The crimes Smith is accused of committing happened New Year’s day in the Cedar Springs community of Spartanburg. Solicitor Barry Barnette says all the crimes happened within just hours of each other, starting at Dominos and even making its way to a home near that area.
“There was an elderly lady that was there. He knocked on the door, asked for money. She told him she didn’t have any money, he forced himself in by gunpoint. Her husband comes in with a gun, runs him away,” said Barnette.
The crime spree ended at a nearby auto shop after employees there told police a man came inside, pulled out a gun and demanded money. After that, police went on the hunt for the suspect and say they found Smith in a matter of hours.
“We knew he was on foot and based on that information, we were able to use information for that particular area,” says Spartanburg Police Major, Art Littlejohn.
While police were able to track down Smith quickly, for the victims in this case, the healing process will take much longer.
The solicitor told 7 News Smith has been charged in the past with failure to stop and possession of a stolen vehicle.
He was denied bond during the hearing and his initial appearance in court is set for March 5.
One victim spoke and talked about how he put a gun to her head and assaulted her.