SBPD and local agencies arrest fugitive burglary suspects -, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

More charges possible for burglary suspects

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Ray Allen Bell (Source: SBPD) Ray Allen Bell (Source: SBPD)
William Ernest Miller (Source: SBPD) William Ernest Miller (Source: SBPD)

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) Two fugitive burglary and theft suspects were found and arrested Wednesday afternoon in a Myrtle Beach oceanfront hotel. 

Surfside Beach Police Investigators and the US Marshal Service Fugitive Task Force found those suspects who had been hiding out in the hotel for several days. 

The US Marshal Service task officers arrested Ray Allen Bell, 48, of Socastee and William Ernest Miller, 47, also of Socastee, after they were wanted in connection to a string of daytime burglaries over the weekend in Surfside Beach. 

"I just happened to look out the window and see a gentleman trying to get in the back door," said Brenda Koberna, who witnessed Sunday's burglary. "Suddenly, I saw him use his shoulder to try and get in the back door."

Bell and Miller were also wanted by the Myrtle Beach Police Department and the Horry County Police Department for separate offenses. 

Both are charged with Criminal Conspiracy, 5 counts of Attempted 2nd Degree Burglary, 4 counts of 2nd Degree Burglary, and 7 counts of Possession of Criminal Tools. 

The SBPD also charged Bell with Driving Under Suspension, Operating Uninsured, Leaving the Scene of an Accident with Property Damage, and Failure to Return Suspended License Plate. 

Bond hearings for Bell and Miller were scheduled for Thursday in municipal court, but were postponed due to the sheer number of charges as well as the number of victims who which to face the suspects.

"Victims want the closure of seeing the person who violated their property and rights," said Surfside Beach Police Chief Michael Frederick. "They want to see them charged by the judge."

The MBPD and HCPD interviewed Bell and Miller after they were arrested Wednesday and both agencies may press dozens of additional charges. 

Chief Frederick said that all agencies worked together to find the suspects.

"None of us had the entire picture, which is why it's so satisfying when interagency cooperation results in the closure of a string of important cases such as these," he said.

"We finally had everything pieced together and handed off to our investigator on the Marshal Service task force by about noon today and by three o'clock they were both in custody.  I wouldn't want those guys after me," Frederick added.

Copyright 2012 WMBF News. All rights reserved.


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