Two arrested in Pawleys Island slaying

Chris Brian Campbell, 37, (left), and Ronnie Gene Ackley Jr., 41, of Pawleys Island, are charged with murder in connection with a slaying outside a Pawleys Island nightclub early today. Both men are in custody.

Two men are facing murder charges in connection with the slaying of a Georgetown man at a Pawleys Island nightclub early Saturday morning.

Georgetown County sheriff’s deputies arrested Ronnie Gene Ackley Jr., 41, of Kings River Road, Pawleys Island, earlier today and charged him with murder in connection with the slaying of 37-year-old Thomas Edward Unrue Jr. of Georgetown.

A second suspect, Christopher Brian Campbell, 37, of Lexington, was arrested late in the day by Lexington Police, according to a news release from the Georgetown County Sheriff’s Office.

Shortly after 3 a.m. Saturday, deputies responded to a fight at Lumpy’s Bar & Grill at 9259 Ocean Highway on Pawleys Island, the release said. When they arrived, they found the victim unresponsive in the parking lot, and CPR was administered until EMS arrived. EMS transported Unrue to Georgetown Memorial Hospital where he was later pronounced dead.

After interviewing multiple witnesses, it was determined the victim was asked to leave the bar on more than one occasion which led to a verbal dispute just outside the front door. The verbal altercation led to a fight in the parking lot where Campbell and Ackley attacked the victim until he was unconscious, the news release said. Authorities did not say how Unrue died.

Ackley was arrested at the scene and transported to Georgetown County Detention Center. Campbell left prior to deputies arriving. Lexington officials are keeping Campbell in custody until he is transported to Georgetown County Detention Center.

Reach Warren L. Wise at 937-5524 or

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