Berkeley County deputies: Huger men arrested in forest death tried to rob man
A robbery led to the fatal shooting of a 31-year-old man whose body was found earlier this month in the Francis Marion National Forest, according to arrest affidavits.
Huger residents Patrick Dwayne Kinloch, 22, of Gray Drive and Joshua Michael Pruitt, 18, of Cainhoy Road each face a murder charge and have been denied bail.
A check into State Law Enforcement Division records showed that Kinloch and Pruitt do not have previous arrests.
The day after Conway resident Robert Moultrie was slain Sept. 9, the frequency of Pruitt’s postings on Facebook picked up. Exactly what they refer to isn’t known.
“Got money nd still ain happy,” he wrote in his first post that week.
Relatives of Moultrie’s told investigators that he drove to Huger on the evening of Sept. 9 and that he was seen at a party. Later, he set out for home in a Chevrolet Suburban over forest roads.
At some point, deputies said Kinloch and Pruitt attempted to rob Moultrie and shot him at 1020 Charity Church Road, which is just off Cainhoy Road and within yards of Kinloch’s home. They discarded his body less than 4 miles away, the authorities said.
“At this time, the motive is robbery,” said Capt. Rick Ollic of the Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office. “I don’t know if they were successful, if they got any cash.”
Moultrie’s remains were found two days later in the backseat of the sport-utility vehicle, which was abandoned in the woods about 20 yards off Brick Church Road.
He was in the fetal position and had suffered a gunshot wound to the chest, according to an incident report.
Both suspects were arrested last week — Pruitt by deputies at his home and Kinloch by federal marshals in Florida. Kinloch was extradited from the Sunshine State and booked into Berkeley County’s jail early Tuesday.
Authorities haven’t said how they connected the suspects to the incident, but Ollic said they gathered statements about the robbery from witnesses.
In the days after the body was found, Pruitt’s Facebook posts turned into complaints about the scuttlebutt floating through the small community where he lives.
On Sept. 12, the day after the man’s body was recovered, Pruitt wrote, “mind ya business.”
Days later, he said that people were going to “tell on each other” in Huger, and he complained of “mind games.”
Attempts to contact his family through Facebook have been unsuccessful. His father, Oris Pruitt of Georgia, wrote this week that “our hearts have been heavy” after hearing about his son’s arrest.
Reach Andrew Knapp at 937-5414 or twitter.com/offlede.