Deputies need your help to solve Christmas Day shooting

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December 26, 2006

AIKEN, S.C.---Aiken County deputies are looking for a person with possible connections to a Christmas Day murder. They say a driver took off after a shooting.

22-year-old Brian Buggs is accused of shooting 29-year-old Demetrie Canty.

Deputies need your help with this investigation. Every tip, every detail can help investigators solve the killing. That would be a big relief for the people who live near the scene on Weaver Street--a place where neighbors and investigators have seen crimes like this before.

Hattie Mae Johnson and her granddaughter have called Weaver Street home for more than two decades. This isn't the first time violence has moved in on their neighborhood.

"It makes me nervous," Hattie said. "I just keep my door closed."

Investigators are no stranger to Hattie's street. They say unwelcome crimes are making themselves at home there.

The Christmas Day shooting happened right around the 100 block of Weaver Street. The suspect lives nearby, just walking distance to McMillan Street.

It's a route Hattie has seen her neighbor Brian Buggs take before.

Now the sheriff's office is trying to figure out what it all means.

"What happened before, what happened after the crime, talk to all the witnesses, and be as thorough as possible," said Capt. Charles Barranco.

So far, Capt. Barranco knows the victim came to Weaver Street from his house across town and met up with Buggs and someone else in a black Ford Expedition. Shots were fired, the Expedition took off, and investigators arrested Buggs sitting in his car just a few feet away.

But Capt. Baranco says piecing it together takes lots of time, and information from the public.

"Just to make sure, we looked at the crime 360 degrees, from all points of view, and we covered all our bases," he said.

"I feel sad," said Hattie, "but I try not to let it worry me."

Solved murders mean neighbors like Hattie don't have to hide their fear anymore.

If you want to help investigators solve this murder, call the Aiken County Sheriff's Department at (800) 922-9709 or Crime Stoppers at (888) 559-TIPS if you know anything.

Also be on the lookout for a black Ford Expedition with South Carolina tags V13633.