Lexington, SC - Lemont Michael B Smith, age 27 from Santee in Orangeburg County, pled guilty to Assault and Battery of a High and Aggravated Nature and Attempted Armed Robbery of a 66-year-old woman this week in Lexington County. Smith was sentenced to seventeen (17) years in prison on both of these charges. Under South Carolina Law, these charges are classified as violent and “no parole” offenses.
On September 1, 2018, the victim went to the ATM located in the Big Lots parking lot on Augusta Road near Wattling Road in West Columbia around 7 o’clock that evening. After she retrieved money from the ATM, Smith approached her, pointed a gun at her head, and demanded the money in her hand. The victim was shot in the hand when she resisted Smith’s attempt to rob her. Smith then got back into a truck he was driving and fled the scene. The victim was able to drive a short distance away and flag down help from a good Samaritan and witness who remained with her until EMS and officers with the West Columbia Police Department arrived. She was then transported to a local hospital for medical treatment.
Investigator Chris Morris with the West Columbia Police Department handled the investigation of this case. He was able to obtain surveillance video from the ATM and released a description and photos of Smith and the truck through local news outlets and over social media. After this, he received tips that were useful in leading him to Smith as the suspect in the crime.
Officers with the Clarendon County Sheriff’s Department were able to identify Smith, who had just been released from their jail a week prior. Smith had stolen the truck he used in the commission of these crimes from a convenience store in Manning the day he was released from jail. He was apprehended driving the same vehicle in North Charleston on September 3, 2018. Smith eventually confessed to the crimes.
Senior Assistant Solicitor Rhonda Patterson handled the prosecution of this case for the Eleventh Circuit Solicitor’s Office.