One of the three teenagers charged in connection with the shooting deaths of Robert and Chaz Blanding has had previous non-violent run-ins with the law in Beaufort County, online county court records show.
St. Helena Island resident Nashon Pringle, 19, faces two counts each of murder and possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime in connection with the Blanding men’s deaths. Both men were found with multiple gunshot wounds; Robert Blanding’s body was found on Nov. 22 on Lady’s Island and Chaz Blanding’s body was found on Saturday on St. Helena Island.
Pringle was convicted of several non-violent misdemeanor crimes in mid-February 2017 after charges were filed in late January, online Beaufort County court records show. He was convicted of providing false information to law enforcement, simple possession of marijuana, receiving stolen goods worth less than $2,000, petit larceny worth less than $2,000, damaging or tampering with a vehicle and possession of a controlled substance. He was sentenced to 30 days in jail for the first four offenses and was sentenced to time already served for the final two.
Pringle was charged with criminal conspiracy and breaking into a motor vehicle in late February, but was not indicted and the case was dismissed in May, according to court records.
Raheem Bennett, 16, of St. Helena Island also faces two counts each of murder and possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime, according to the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office. Channon Preston Jr., 18, of Lady’s Island, faces two counts of accessory after the fact to murder.
Preston’s only prior run-in with the law as an adult was a traffic violation this autumn, according to online court records.
Juvenile criminal records are not publicly available in South Carolina. Any prior incidents involving Bennett and any incidents involving Pringle or Preston while they were still juveniles cannot be released by law. Juvenile records may be discussed in the context of court proceedings.
Bennett is currently enrolled as a ninth grade student at Beaufort High School, Beaufort County School District spokesman Jim Foster said on Tuesday. Pringle and Preston were formerly enrolled in Beaufort High School but transferred out of the school in the 2015-2016 school year, he said. He could not discuss whether the teens enrolled in a different school or if they dropped out, but neither of them graduated from the school, he said.
The three teens’ bond hearings are expected to be held some time next week, according to the 14th Circuit Solicitor’s Office.