COLUMBIA — The South Carolina Supreme Court has upheld the death sentence for a man convicted of killing two police officers in a dispute over a highway widening project.
Steven Bixby’s attorneys said his sentence should be overturned because prosecutors tried to play on jurors’ emotions by showing scenes from one of the officer’s funerals. Chief Justice Jean Toal said in the ruling released Monday that the video showed the impact of Abbeville County Sheriff’s Sgt. Danny Wilson’s death on the community.
Prosecutors say Wilson was ambushed as he knocked on the family’s door to talk about their dispute with state transportation officials. Constable Donnie Ouzts was killed when he went to check on Wilson.
Bixby’s father has been involuntarily committed to a mental institution. His mother is serving a life prison sentence.