Investigators with the Richland County Sheriff’s Department are looking for three people who may have information about a double homicide that occurred Thursday in Columbia’s Olympia neighborhood.
The individuals being sought are described as a white woman, about 23 to 24 years of age, with black hair, multiple tattoos and face piercings; a white man, about 28 to 29 years of age, with long blonde hair and a short beard and a white man in his twenties, who is clean shaven with brown hair, Sheriff Leon Lott said in a statement released Monday.
The three, described as acquaintances of the two men who were shot, were seen traveling in a grey or silver car with a veterans’ license tag.
The individuals may have important information to the case and are asked to come forward, Lott said.
The two who were killed in the double shooting have been identified by Richland County coroner Gary Watts as William Todd Watlington Jr., 27, of Carlen Avenue in Lexington, and Joshua Samuel Cullifer, 22, of Kentucky Street in Olympia.
The men died as a result of gunshot wounds, Watts said Saturday.
In addition, two people have been arrested in connection with the homicides. Carlos Flores, 17, was charged with two counts of murder, and a 15-year-old girl was charged with accessory after the fact.
Officers responded Friday morning to the home at 643-A Kentucky St. and found the two men shot dead in the lower level of the house, Lt. Curtis Wilson, a spokesman for the Richland County Sheriff’s Department, said Friday.
Police say Flores shot both victims in the upper body early Thursday morning after a verbal altercation over drugs. Wilson said the suspects and victims were acquaintances.
Homicide is a rare occurrence for the Olympia community, which is largely populated with single-family and rental homes and young residents, including many college students.
Neighbors described the area, on the westernmost side of the community, backing up to the area’s quarry, as "sketchy" and sometimes uncomfortable. But they said they were surprised to see a crime like this.
The suspects were arrested Thursday night in Aiken County after their vehicle was identified driving east on I-20, slamming into other vehicles on the interstate, according to the sheriff’s department.
Flores, who is being held in Aiken, is facing additional charges in Aiken County and will be taken to the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center in Richland County, according to the sheriff’s department. The 15-year-old girl’s case will be sent to Family Court.