Hearing scheduled in Conway CresCom Bank murder case

Three motions filed in the case are set to be discussed in April

Brandon Council hearing set

FLORENCE, SC (WMBF) - A hearing has been scheduled in the case of the man accused of shooting and killing two women during a bank robbery in August 2017.

Brandon Council faces a death sentence after he allegedly shot and killed Katie Skeen and Donna Major during the robbery of the CresCom bank in Conway.

Three motions are set to be discussed at the upcoming hearing, including ones to exclude from the trial Council’s statements made to FBI just after his arrest and items found in the car he was driving.

The two motions were filed July 20 and July 23.

Council’s attorneys want his alleged confession and items found in a vehicle he was seen driving before his arrest not to be allowed as evidence.

(Source: Florence County Detention Center)
(Source: Florence County Detention Center) (Florence County Detention Center)

According to an affidavit written by an FBI special agent, Council confessed to the robbery and told agents “he was desperate, he needed money, and he knew that he was going to hurt somebody that day.”

Federal court documents filed by Council’s defense claim Council’s statements were unconstitutionally obtained in violation of his Miranda rights.

However, Council was advised of his Miranda rights, according to FBI officials and the recent court documents, and he signed a waiver of those rights.

Council’s attorneys though are asking a judge to determine if their client fully understood what he was doing when he confessed to the crimes and abandoned his right to not incriminate himself.

Council’s defense is also arguing a search warrant used to search a white Mercedes he was believed to be driving when he was arrested in North Carolina was not supported by probable cause because of the issues stemming from the constitutionality of his confession.

Court documents say numerous items were found in the vehicle, including the gun allegedly used in the deadly bank robbery.

To read our previous story on these motions, click here.

A motion to strike non-statutory aggravating factors, filed September 12, asked the court to strike facts and circumstances that increase the severity or guilt of a criminal act.

It’s also set to be discussed at the hearing.

The government said in its notice of intent to seek the death penalty, it plans to examine factors including victim impact, Council’s continuing and escalating pattern of criminal activity, targeting innocent victims and lack of remorse.

To read more about the prosecution and defense’s arguments regarding this motion, click here.

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