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Arrest made in West Columbia cab driver’s murder

Columbia, SC (Paul Kirby) – Law enforcement officers from the City of Columbia say they have made several arrests in the shooting of a popular West Columbia cab driver. According to officers, they believe that two 14-year-olds shot and killed Paul Swatsell, 53, as he drove them in his Checker Yellow Cab on the night of December 15, 2019 in north Columbia.

According to investigators, Swatsell picked up five juveniles at a Waffle House that night. When he dropped them off, the teens produced a gun and robbed him before and shooting him down. They then fled the scene.

Investigators were able to piece together what happened and who was responsible by looking at surveillance footage from area businesses and tips they received. They arrested two of the teens and charged them with armed robbery and murder. Their names are not being released because they are under the age of 18.

Meanwhile, friends of Swatsell are still in shock and mourning. They say he was a gentle, kind man that would have given anyone anything he had, even the shirt off his back. His memorial service was packed with friends and fellow alumni of Brookland Cayce High School. They all came to say goodbye to a member of their group of life-long friends. A graveside service will be held for Paul on January 2nd at the Abundant Life Assembly. That’s located at 105 Lincoln Street in the City of West Columbia.

Swatsell had prepaid for his final expenses, but the arrangements did not include a headstone. Now, he his final resting place will be at a small West Columbia church where he had a relationship with the pastor and congregants. His friends are working hard to make sure that he has a marker that reminds people not of where he is, but who he was. They are asking the community to help cover that expense. According to a spokesperson for his graduating class, they need a bit more than $500.

Anyone who can help with this, please send a check to the Swatsell Memorial Fund. You can mail it to: MENTAL HEALTH AMERICA OF SC, 1823 Gadsden Street, Columbia, SC. Please put Paul Swatsell on the memo line. You can also mail a donation directly to the church at: Abundant Life Assembly C/O Paul Swatsell Fund. The address is105 Lincoln Street, West Columbia, SC 29170.

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