Crime & Courts

Man on meth got stolen washing machine into his Honda, SC cops say. But mud is slippery

Willie Lee Rowell
Willie Lee Rowell Spartanburg County Detention Center

Willie Lee Rowell was on the verge of getting away with a crime Sunday.

The South Carolina man gained access to a residence without permission, according to the Spartanburg County Sheriff’s Office.

Then, the sheriff’s office said Rowell was able to get a washing machine out of the building, and into a 2001 Honda Accord — a moderate size sedan.

But the 41-year-old Enoree resident was not able to complete what the sheriff’s office called a burglary. Rowell’s car “got stuck in the mud,” according to an incident report.

The mud prevented Rowell from driving away from the Woodruff home with the washing machine, and allowed sheriff’s deputies to detain him. And they made another discovery: Rowell was high on methamphetamine, the incident report stated.

Deputies said they found two syringes on Rowell, one with “a bloody substance inside,” and he confessed it was meth.

Rowell was arrested and taken to the Spartanburg County Detention Center, where he was booked just before 10 p.m., according to jail records.

While he was taken away from the crime scene, the Honda remained behind. The sheriff’s office reported the homeowner agreed to let the car stay on the property until the ground was dry enough to have it towed.

Rowell was charged with third-degree burglary, petit larceny less than $2,000 and possession of methamphetamine (first offense), according to jail records. No bond has been set.

Dozens of people are charged with drug-related charges each month in Horry County. Here are the consequences if you are caught with drugs in South Carolina.

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Noah Feit is a Real Time reporter with The State and McClatchy Carolinas Regional Team. The award-winning journalist has worked for multiple newspapers since starting his career in 1999.