Newly released court papers give a graphic account of what unfolded inside a Conway CresCom bank branch on Monday when two female employees were killed.
Authorities say a suspect shot and killed Kathryn “Katie” Davis Skeen, 36, of Green Sea and Donna Major, 59, of Conway during the robbery before fleeing the scene in one of the victim’s vehicles.
Brandon Michael Council — the man accused in a deadly bank robbery — was arrested following a brief foot pursuit by police Wednesday afternoon after being spotted by someone near a Red Lobster in Greenville, N.C.
Once he was captured, he allegedly admitted to police that he shot the bank employees, according to an affidavit.
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Council told the agents he was “desperate, he needed money, and that he knew he was going to shoot someone,” the court documents state.
The documents go on to say, “he knew he was going to hurt somebody that day.” He told agents he had watched the movie “Get Rich or Die Trying,” and also stated “he did not deserve to live.” according to the documents.
What happened during the robbery
The court documents lay out the gruesome sequence of events that unfolded inside the CresCom Bank at 16th Avenue, and what happened leading up to the fateful robbery.
The day of the robbery and murders, Council allegedly went into the bank just after 1:10 p.m., had a brief conversation with a female bank teller, pulled a gun on her, and then shot her multiple times, the documents state.
He then jumped over the bank counter, according to the affidavit, and is allegedly seen discovering another female teller hiding beneath a desk.
Video surveillance then allegedly shows him shooting the second female multiple times as she tries to hide under the desk, the document states, and also says he was seen jumping over the counter multiple times during the incident.
Council fled the scene in one of the victims’ cars, which was later recovered, police said.
A bank audit shows $15,294 was taken, the document states, and also says both victims’ car keys were taken, and multiple bank credit cards that belonged to the victims were missing, too.
Surveillance footage from the Conway Inn Express on Pine Street shows that at about 1:20 p.m., just after the robbery, Council drove up in a white Chrysler 200, grabbed luggage from the room, and left, the document states.
Before the deadly scene and Council’s past
In the days leading up to the robbery, footage from the Conway Inn Express, dated Aug. 15, shows two men and one woman unloading and carrying luggage into the same room Council was seen running out of after the robbery, the document states.
The federal affidavit says footage showed the man and woman left, and a man resembling Council stayed behind. Police traced the license plate information back to a North Carolina woman named Melissa Fogg. Officers spoke with Fogg the day of the bank robbery, and allege she and a man named Daryl Artis dropped Council off at the Conway Inn Express, the affidavit says.
Fogg told officers that before she left Council, she and Artis allegedly saw him try to destroy a cellphone and throw it away at a nearby fast food restaurant, the document says.
Police have said Council was wanted for an Aug. 10 BB&T bank robbery in Wilson, N.C. No one was injured in that robbery, according to WRAL.
Council, of Wilson, N.C., has a criminal past in North Carolina with convictions dating back to 2004, records show. He served more than five years in North Carolina correctional facilities after he was convicted of being an habitual felon and larceny on March 16, 2011. His parole ended July 31 — 10 days before the reported robbery in Wilson, according to online records through the N.C. Department of Public Safety.
Seven months before his 2010 arrest in that case, Council was back in prison for breaking his probation on a 2008 felony breaking and entering conviction with another larceny in 2009.
Council was also found guilty of receiving stolen goods and stealing a car in 2005 and of receiving a stolen car in 2004.
Court appearance and arrest
Fifteenth Circuit Solicitor Jimmy Richardson said he is partnering with the U.S. Attorney’s Office and “aggressively pursuing” federal charges in the deadly robbery.
Council could be extradited back to Horry County by next week, Richardson said.
Lance Crick, of the South Carolina U.S. Attorney’s Office, said in a news release that Council has been charged with armed bank robbery with a deadly weapon resulting in death, use, carry, and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a violent crime.
Multiple agencies are partnering in the investigation, including the FBI, Conway Police Department, South Carolina Law Enforcement Division, North Carolina police agencies and others.
A search for a car linked to a deadly Conway bank robbery came to an end in North Carolina Wednesday, shortly after Council was caught.
A helicopter flew over Loris Wednesday morning as agents with the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division searched by sky and by land for a car stolen from one of two victims in the armed robbery Monday.
“We expected him to drop that car and we had been riding looking for the car. We couldn’t believe that he drove the car all the way to North Carolina,” the solicitor said.
On Wednesday, Council was seen driving a white Mercedes Benz leaving a Greenville motel parking lot, and traveled to another motel, where a brief foot chase with police ensued before he was taken into custody, the affidavit states.
Authorities said Council confessed to the CresCom bank robbery and to shooting Skeen and Major, the document states.
When police and Richardson heard the news that Council had been arrested, he said, they were “ecstatic.”
“I really thought he was going to kill somebody. I thought a cop or somebody, whoever stops him, it’s going to be bad and I had sort of resigned myself to that, but to find out that he just ran? … It couldn’t have turned out any better,” Richardson said.