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Lexington County man assaulted at Jakes Landing, LCSD seeking community’s help in identifying assail

Lexington, SC (Angelica Iglesias) – David Branham, 55, was assaulted by a group of men at Jakes Landing on Lake Murray at approximately 9:00 pm on Sunday, May 27, according to police records.

At a press conference on June 1, Branham said a group of four or five men were having trouble getting their white pontoon boat out of the water, while he was backing his trailer into the water to load up his boat. The men, in what Branham remembers as an older model Chevrolet pick-up truck, had their headlights on. He said he had seen the men around the landing before. According to Branham, he asked the men to turn their lights off, so he could see while backing up. He said one of the men started yelling profanities at him, so he quickly got back in his vehicle.

According to Branham, the men surrounded his pick-up truck. He said while one of the men spoke to him through his open window, another one man punched him in the face. He tried to pull off but the men were in front of his vehicle. Branham said one of the men was able to get his arm inside the truck and unlock his door. The next thing he remembers is laying on the boat ramp with his shirt torn off and his wife yelling and running toward him. Branham’s wife said the men ran off and let Branham’s pick-up truck roll into the water.

“I’m going to beat an old m----- f----- up,” Branham heard one of the men say. He was the ring leader of the assault, according to Branham. He described him as a shorter white man with blonde curly hair parted on the side. Branham believes the men were drinking and possibly on drugs.

“My 15-year-old daughter can’t even look at me without crying,” said Branham. He sustained several injuries, including a black eye, an unaligned jaw from the punch, a large bruise on his inner thigh, and multiple other cuts and bruises.

“It was very traumatic,” said Branham’s wife of the assault.

At the press conference, Branham said a man and woman assisted him after the attack but did not identify themselves in the chaos. Branham, his family and the Lexington County Sheriff’s Department are asking for them to come forward with any information on what they saw of the attack. Any other witnesses who may have heard or seen something are encouraged to come forward to make a statement.

“We are going to depend on tips from the community on this one,” said Captain Adam Myrick, a spokesperson for the Sheriff’s Department. They do not have much information at this time and are still trying to identify the men responsible for the assault. Captain Myrick warns the community to be aware of their surroundings.

Digital Communications Coordinator Colby Gallagher would like the public to know that officers are patrolling the lake attentively since the incident occurred to ensure the safety of the community.

The Branham family is offering a $500 reward to anyone who can assist the LCSD in the investigation. As well as that reward, there are possible rewards made by the LCSD through Midlands Crime Stoppers if the tip leads to an arrest.

The best way to send a tip to the Lexington County Sheriff’s Department is to call Midland’s Crime Stoppers at 1-888 CRIME SC. Calls are anonymous and extremely important for this investigation.

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