Bennettsville man charged 8 months after wife's death

Vander Brown Simmons Jr. (Source: Marlboro County Detention Center)
Vander Brown Simmons Jr. (Source: Marlboro County Detention Center)

Bennettsville, SC - BENNETSVILLE, SC (AP) - South Carolina police are charging a man with killing his wife eight months after the couple's children told investigators their father hurt their mother.

Vander Brown Simmons Jr., 33, was being held Thursday in the Marlboro County Detention Center on a murder charge. Simmons hasn't been arraigned and a jail worker did not know whether he has an attorney.

The charge came five days after investigators exhumed the body of 33-year-old Brandy Simmons. The Charlotte (NC) Observer reported Saturday that her family pressured investigators to reopen the case.

Officials said in July that Brandy Simmons died of an aneurysm after a fall, but her children told police they saw their father hit her with a stick the day she was found unconscious in their home.

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