No shooting charge added in Beaufort Marine's death

mmcnab@beaufortgazette.comFebruary 20, 2014 

Jerrit Timberson shooting suspects

Clockwise from top left: Kyle Lyttle, Champagne White-Timberson, Brandi Hardy, Kelsey Dent and Sierra Powers.

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A man believed to have shot and killed a Beaufort Marine who attempted to rob him was indicted Thursday on marijuana charges related to the case, however, no new charges were added, according to the 14th Circuit Solicitor's Office.

Karl Lyttle, 21, of Beaufort was indicted by a grand jury on charges of possession with intent to distribute marijuana and possession with intent to distribute marijuana within close proximity of a school. However, he has not been charged with shooting 20-year-old Pfc. Jerrit Timberson of Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort.

Solicitor Duffie Stone said his office is still working with local and federal officials on the case and more charges could be added. He declined to comment further.

A Beaufort Police Department spokeswoman said Thursday she could not provide more information.

Lyttle's attorney, Jared Newman, said he didn't think Lyttle would be charged with a shooting offense.

"I don't think there are any grounds in law or in fact for other charges to be added," he said. "I've gone through the discovery. They don't have a case against him."

Three Marines, who have since been discharged from the Corps, and Timberson's wife also were indicted Thursday, in connection with the alleged Nov. 23 armed robbery of Lyttle, a Solicitor's Office news release said.

Pfc. Kelsey Dent, 19; Pfc. Brandi Hardy, 20; Pfc. Sierra Powers, 19; and Champagne White-Timberson, 19, Timberson's wife, were all indicted Thursday on criminal conspiracy charges. Dent also was indicted on an armed robbery charge, according to the release.

On Nov. 23, Dent and Timberson attempted to rob Lyttle with fake guns during a marijuana deal in the Mossy Oaks neighborhood, authorities have said. They believe Lyttle pulled a real gun and shot Timberson, who later died.

Dent was arrested the night of the robbery attempt. Timberson's wife was charged Nov. 25. Charges for Hardy and Powers followed Nov. 27. All four were charged with criminal conspiracy for planning the robbery attempt, arranging for Dent and Timberson to purchase marijuana from Lyttle and rob him with fake pistols during the deal, authorities have said.

Dent and Timberson were stationed at Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort. Hardy and Powers were stationed at Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island.

The three charged Marines were "administratively separated" after the robbery attempt and received other than honorable discharges, according to public affairs officers at the bases. Marines who receive an other-than-honorable discharge are not eligible for post-service benefits, according to Corps' regulations.

Follow reporter Matt McNab on Twitter at twitter.com/IPBG_Matt.

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