South Carolina kidnapping suspect charged with 4 killings in cold case

todd-kohlhepp

A South Carolina kidnapping suspect who confessed to a 2003 quadruple homicide appeared in court Sunday on murder charges in the cold case.

Todd Kohlhepp, 45, was charged Saturday with four counts of murder, according to Spartanburg County, South Carolina, court records.

Authorities previously said Kohlhepp had told detectives details only the killer would have known about the homicides at a motorcycle shop in Chesnee, South Carolina.

The victims — Beverly Guy, Scott Ponder, Brian Lucas and Chris Sherbert — were found fatally shot inside Superbike Motorsports on November 6, 2003, CNN-affiliate WYFF News 4 reported.

Melissa Ponder, the wife of one victim, told WYFF: “I’m sad, relieved, in shock.”

A bond hearing was scheduled for 11 a.m. on Sunday, WYFF reported.

Kohlhepp could also be linked to up to three other homicides, Spartanburg County Sheriff Chuck Wright told reporters Saturday night.

Kohlhepp was charged last week with kidnapping a woman, identified as Kala Brown, and chaining her for two months on his property. Last week, authorities also discovered the body of a man, later identified as Brown’s boyfriend, Charles Carver, on Kohlhepp’s property.

Kohlhepp led investigators Saturday to where he said a second and third body are buried on his property, Wright said.

Carver was shot more than once in the upper extremities, Spartanburg County Coroner Rusty Clevenger told reporters Saturday night. An anthropologist is helping to determine how long the body was buried, the coroner said.

“We talked with the family and they’re obviously heartbroken,” Wright said.

Friday, as the suspect appeared at a bail hearing on a kidnapping charge in Brown’s case, a solicitor told the judge that Brown has said she saw Kohlhepp shoot her boyfriend.

Brown, 30, and Carver, 32, went missing August 31. Authorities said Brown and Kohlhepp knew each other and that a social media post indicated she was to meet him at the farm on the day she and Carver disappeared.

Authorities on Thursday found Brown chained by the ankle and neck inside a shipping container on the 95-acre farm in Woodruff, near Spartanburg.

Brown also told investigators that she believed as many as four people had been killed on the property.

Kohlhepp, who had been charged with one count of kidnapping, did not enter a plea at his hearing on Friday or have an attorney then. The judge sent the bail matter to a circuit court.

Kohlhepp is a registered sex offender who has been working as a real estate agent in the area. He bought the farm in May 2014 for $305,000.

He spent 15 years in prison for a 1987 kidnapping.

By Steve Almasy