South Carolina

Woman charged after SWAT standoff gave birth in 2015 with help of York Co. deputies

Morgan Joyce Varn, left, and Jonathan Mikael Robinson
Morgan Joyce Varn, left, and Jonathan Mikael Robinson

Deputies in Lancaster County charged two people in a SWAT situation in Indian Land earlier this week after suspects were holed up in the home for hours, police said.

Details of the crime reported by deputies, in records obtained by The Herald, show that the woman who was charged threatened to shoot the victim, refused to come out when asked by police, and was taken into custody several hours later, after a SWAT team became involved.

The woman, Morgan Joyce Varn, 24, appears to be the same person York County deputies helped give birth in April 2015, said Trent Faris, spokesman for the York County Sheriff’s Office.

In April 2015, Varn sent a Facebook message to York County deputies, thanking them for assisting her with birth. Afterward, Varn was featured in a story and video in The Herald and on

Varn, 24, faces charges of kidnapping, armed robbery and property damage in the Indian Land incident, police and court records show. She remains jailed without bond.

In a report from the incident Monday and Tuesday in Lancaster County, officers said they were familiar with Varn and repeatedly asked her to come out during SWAT negotiations. But she responded, “I’m not coming out, and unless you have a search warrant you are not coming in, so go away!” the report states.

SWAT members had to go into the Sandal Brook Road home Tuesday morning near the Lancaster County Sheriff’s Office substation in Indian Land, following a standoff for several hours with people inside, said sheriff’s office spokesman Doug Barfield.

Neighbors near the townhouse were evacuated for their safety during the negotiation and SWAT team event, Barfield said.

A 25-year-old male victim told police he was robbed of his cell phone and money by two people inside the house, Barfield said. The victim then left the townhome and called 911.

Deputies who responded to the 911 call tried to call several occupants out of the home, and two adult males came out, Barfield said. Two suspects - a man and woman - who were later charged and another woman remained inside, Barfield said.

A SWAT team arrived and called out to the occupants for several hours over a patrol car public address system, Barfield said. The SWAT team then tossed a telephone into the home as a final attempt to communicate with the people inside, he said.

The door of the home was opened, and two women were brought out and detained by officers, Barfield said.

The SWAT team entered the home and took a man into custody after he refused to come out, he said.

Police identified that man as Jonathan Mikael Robinson, 23, who was charged with kidnapping, armed robbery and weapons charges. He also is jailed without bond.

In the home, deputies found a loaded gun that was reported stolen in a 2016 crime.

“We had three people and a pistol inside that home and for hours did everything we could to get them to come out,” Lancaster County Shgeriff Barry Faile said. “When they didn’t, we had to go in and get them. Fortunately, no weapons were discharged and nobody was hurt.”