Suspect in fatal fire truck theft charged by grand jury

Kalvin Hunt
Kalvin Hunt File photo

A 26-year-old Sumter man charged with murder after allegedly stealing a Port Royal fire truck, then striking and killing a pedestrian in February was indicted by a county grand jury last week.

Indictments filed April 19 against Kalvin Hunt were among more than 200 handed down by the Beaufort County grand jury during its monthly session at the County Courthouse, according to the 14th Circuit Solicitor's Office.

The finding of the 18-member panel clears the way for prosecutors to try Hunt in General Sessions Court for murder, grand larceny and nine other charges related to the Feb. 24 incident.

Hunt is accused of fleeing Naval Hospital Beaufort and stealing a Port Royal fire truck while firefighters responded to a medical call.

Authorities said Hunt then used the emergency vehicle to ram several other vehicles and kill Justin Miller, 28, of Port Royal, while Miller and his brother walked along Ribaut Road.

Hunt, who is appealing a bad-conduct discharge from the Marine Corps, was transferred last month from the Beaufort County Detention Center to a psychiatric hospital in Columbia, his attorney, Corey Fleming, said during a hearing last month.

In other indictments by the grand jury:

  • Christopher Sayne, 34, and Anthony Sturm, 36, both of Tennessee, were indicted on burglary and car break-in charges after they were arrested March 24 amid a trove of stolen goods in a Bluffton hotel room.
  • After sifting through the firearms, electronics, jewelry and other items found in the Suburban Lodge hotel room, investigators from the Beaufort County Sheriff's Office and Bluffton Police Department charged them in connection with a spree of thefts.

    A victim alerted police when he saw one of the men drop a laptop stolen from his car that day.

    Sayne was indicted on 10 charges and remains in the Beaufort County Detention Center, with bond set at $60,620, according to the jail log. Sturm was indicted on five charges and is in jail with bond set at $45,620.

  • Russell Alan Perugino, 26, was indicted on two counts of exposing others to HIV.
  • Perugino was accused by two other men of concealing that he was HIV-positive when he had sexual contact with them. The encounters allegedly occurred in 2008 in Bluffton and on Hilton Head Island.

    The Sheriff's Office declined to comment on the case. Solicitor Duffie Stone also declined to comment.

    According to state law, exposing others to HIV without first alerting a sexual partner of the infection is a felony, punishable by a fine of up to $5,000 or imprisonment of up to 10 years.

    Perugino was arrested March 19 and posted a $10,000 bond, according to the jail log.

  • Bradley Roy, 43, was indicted on charges of operating a small methamphetamine lab in a Bluffton home.
  • Investigators learned that Roy and 30-year-old Angelica Escalante of Hardeeville had been buying a lot of pseudoephedrine, the main ingredient in meth.

    On Dec. 29, members of the Beaufort/Jasper Multi Agency Drug Task Force raided the home on Coney Island Lane and found methamphetamine and components to manufacture the drug, according to the Sheriff's Office.

    Roy was charged with purchasing large amounts of pseudoephedrine, manufacturing meth and discarding meth waste.

    Escalante pleaded guilty Feb. 29 to one count of possession of meth and was sentenced to 18 months of probation, according to Solicitor's Office spokesman Daniel Brownstein.

  • Pamela Habersham, 36, was indicted on kidnapping and carjacking charges for allegedly stealing a woman's car in September at a gas station on Robert Smalls Parkway.
  • Port Royal police said Habersham approached a woman at the Kangaroo Express, asked for a ride to Savannah, then followed her outside and got into her car without permission. Habersham demanded the woman drive, then assaulted her and took her car, authorities said.

    Habersham was arrested hours later in Charleston after allegedly causing a seven-car crash on Interstate 26 in Charleston County. She got out of the vehicle and ran down the middle of the interstate, according to the S.C. Highway Patrol.

    Habersham is being held at the Beaufort County Detention Center, according to the jail log.

    Reporter Allison Stice contributed to this report.

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