crimes

Blythewood, South Carolina’s Darrell Demarcus Land sentenced to life in prison for Arnold Jamal Bennett’s murder

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Darrell Demarcus Land, then 31, of Blythewood, South Carolina, United States allegedly fatally shot Arnold Jamal Bennett, 36, of Myrtle Beach, Horry County, South Carolina in the head inside a house in Little River, Horry County on August 4, 2019. Bennett was reported missing to the Myrtle Beach Police Department on August 7, 2019 and to the Horry County Police Department on August 13, 2019.

On August 30, 2019, two city workers of North Myrtle Beach, Horry County found Bennett’s remains in a wooded area off Old Sanders Road near Robert Edge Parkway in North Myrtle Beach. On October 29, 2019, Bennett’s remains were identified and Land was charged with murder.

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On May 21, 2020, bond was denied for Land. Booked into the J. Reuben Long Detention Center in Conway, Horry County, he was charged with murder, possession of a weapon during a violent crime and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

On July 28, 2022, Land was found guilty of murder and possession of a weapon during a violent crime and was sentenced to life in prison. By statute, there is no additional sentence for possession of a weapon during a violent crime because he was sentenced to life.

“This was a complicated case involving multiple police departments,” 15th Circuit Solicitor’s Office senior assistant solicitor Mary-Ellen Walter told WBTW. “Both the Myrtle Beach Police Department which took the initial missing person report and the Horry County Police Department, which took over the investigation did an outstanding job. Special thanks go to Detective Ken Marcus for his perseverance in ensuring justice for Mr. Bennett.”

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Blythewood was originally named Doko. The town is a suburb of Columbia, South Carolina.

Former National Football League and Canadian Football League player Brandon Wilds, 29, was born in Blythewood. He played for the New York Jets in 2016, the Cleveland Browns in 2017, the Jacksonville Jaguars from 2017 to 2019 and the Calgary Stampeders in 2020.

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