3 men accused of beating 2 after party

MOUNT PLEASANT — A 26-year-old man suffered broken facial bones when he and a friend were beaten Saturday morning as they walked home from a party, police said.

Walter Markiewicz of Charleston was hospitalized overnight at East Cooper Regional Medical Center for his injuries, friend Josh Staveley-O'Carroll said Wednesday. Staveley-O'Carroll, 29, said he was repeatedly hit in his lower left back and is still limping.

Police arrested Laurie Edward Altman III, 19, Harry M. Hallman III, 22, and John Harden Isaac, 22, on charges of second-degree lynching. All are from Mount Pleasant and were released on $10,000 personal recognizance bonds. Hallman is the grandson of Mayor Harry Hallman Jr.

Staveley-O'Carroll said Wednesday he still doesn't know the reason behind the attack. The suspects and victims had been at a party on Pocahontas Street, a police report said. A fight broke out at the party, but Staveley-O'Carroll said he didn't know why or who was involved.

The two victims left the party shortly before 4 a.m. and were walking to Staveley-O'Carroll's house on Fox Pond Drive. Other people from the party, including the three suspects, walked with them for a while, Staveley-O'Carroll said.

The victims cut through a church parking lot when Staveley-O'Carroll thought he heard someone following them. He said they were confronted by Altman, Hallman and Isaac. "They wanted their one friend to fight with Walter and we could all stand to the side," he said.

One of the men hit Markiewicz, and he went to the ground, Staveley-O'Carroll said. He said the other men tried to push him away, but then someone jumped on him and started beating him.

After the beatings, officers found a wallet nearby that contained Altman's identification, a report stated. Staveley-O'Carroll directed police to Mataoka Street, where the three suspects had earlier split from the group. The three men had blood on their clothing and minor injuries consistent with a fight, according to a report.

Hallman could not be reached Wednesday for comment. Mayor Harry Hallman's wife, Shirley, said their grandson does not live with them and there's nothing they would need to say about his arrest.