Myrtle Beach Bike Rallies

Police still seek help in solving 2014 Bikefest murders

Time lapse video - Bikefest over 24 Hours

Watch 24 hours of Bikefest sped up to under 20 seconds as filmed from a hotel on Fourth Avenue North on Ocean Boulevard.
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Watch 24 hours of Bikefest sped up to under 20 seconds as filmed from a hotel on Fourth Avenue North on Ocean Boulevard.

Three people were gunned down outside of the Bermuda Sands Resort over Memorial Day weekend in 2014. But no one was ever charged with the killings.

Two years later, officials say they are still waiting for someone with information to come forward.

Officers are no closer to finding the shooter today than they were then, but Myrtle Beach police Lt. Joey Crosby says they aren’t giving up.

“We have not made an arrest in the investigation but it is still an active investigation,” he said. “Until the case is resolved, we’ll continue to ask folks to come forward with any information that they have.”

Officers were called to the Bermuda Sands Resort at 104 N. Ocean Blvd. at 11:03 p.m. on Saturday, May 24, 2014 in reference to a large fight in the street in front of the hotel. As they responded, police learned that 26-year-old Keith Alextruss Williams of Lincolnville had been shot three times.

Devonte Dantzler, 21, Sandy Geddis Barnwell, 22, both of Summerville, and Jamie Williams, 28, of Ladson had gone to the second floor of the hotel after the fight when multiple gunshots were fired, hitting the trio, according to a police report.

Dantzler, Barnwell and Jamie Williams each died from trauma they suffered from the gunshot wounds, Horry County Deputy Coroner Darris Fowler said at the time of the shooting.

Keith Williams was hospitalized, but survived to later be arrested on a stolen weapons charge for a gun found in the trunk of his car the night of the shooting, according to an August 2014 report by our news partner, WPDE.

The Myrtle Beach Police Department worked with the Summerville Police Department in 2014 to track down information about the victims and other clues in search of a lead to the killer. But no suspect was ever named.

One of the driving forces is that you understand as an officer. You speak with the family, you see their pain, you see their hurt so we strive to bring them closure and answers to this investigation and that’s certainly what we’re trying to do.

Lt. Joey Crosby, Myrtle Beach Police Department

“We’re going to continue to work the investigation and try to bring those families closure,” Crosby said. “One of the driving forces is that you understand as an officer. You speak with the family, you see their pain, you see their hurt so we strive to bring them closure and answers to this investigation and that’s certainly what we’re trying to do.”

Crosby said they will continue to solicit information this year like they did in 2015. Last year, the Myrtle Beach Police Department used social media to remind people of the case, asking anyone with information about the case to call 843-918-1382. Callers can remain anonymous.

“Somebody may think that information is not important or small, but please allow us the opportunity to see how their piece of information fits into the big puzzle,” Crosby said.

Six other people, in addition to Keith Williams, were injured in a total of eight shootings along Ocean Boulevard in Myrtle Beach during the 2014 Atlantic Beach Bikefest.

But the triple homicide made that year’s event one of the deadliest and spurred changes in public safety measures specifically for Bikefest that continue today.

Extra law enforcement, barricades, a 23-mile traffic loop, a ban on mo-peds and golf carts from entering that loop, a mapping app and extra cameras were put into place to keep traffic flowing, to help officers fight crime and to discourage large gatherings from getting out of control.

Tension was high as officers geared up for Atlantic Beach Bikefest on the Grand Strand last year at a time when some across the nation were starting to question the policing of minority groups. White officers shooting black teens in Ferguson, Mo., New York and Baltimore, Md., fueled those tensions.

Some feared Bikefest 2015 would give birth to protests, riots and more violence. But police hailed their new enforcement of public safety a success, citing no homicides, fewer tickets and fewer arrests last year than the year before, later announcing they would continue the same enforcement this year.

But a new prohibition this year was spawned after officers noticed mo-peds and golf carts snarling traffic along the 23-mile traffic loop. Mo-peds and golf carts will now be banned from the traffic loop roads beginning two hours before the loop opens. The traffic loop will be in place from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. Friday through Sunday.

Police and city officials are using social media and advertisements to inform people of the changes with messages encouraging Bikefest attendees to obey the laws.

The Myrtle Beach Police Department also developed a mapping app to help motorists know how to navigate the 23-mile traffic loop.

Demekiah Brown comments on Myrtle Beach's 23-mile traffic loop put in place for Atlantic Beach Bikefest and Memorial Day weekend. Her comments are similar to many others heard this week.

Emily Weaver: 843-444-1722, @TSNEmily

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