News 12 at 6 o' clock / Saturday, June 10, 2012
LANGLEY, S.C. A break-in and hostage situation has an entire Langley neighborhood in shock.
Keith Cunningham lives across from where the break-in occurred and saw the whole thing unfold.
"It's usually a very quiet neighborhood, usually there's no trouble on this street," he said.
But blue lights, sheriff's deputies, crime scene tape and a lot of commotion shattered the silence in Langley Saturday night.
Gina McCuen lives on Jackson Street in Langley.
"I was sitting in the living room, and the next thing I knew, I seen cops roping off both sides [of the road]," she said.
Kevin Claeys, 37, is behind bars. Deputies say Claeys first fired a gun at his home on Augusta Road, then ran to a nearby home on Gray Street, where he forced a couple inside and shot a man in the face.
But he didn't stop there.
Cunningham described what happened next, saying, "The cops come through the woods with their flashlights and rifles out, then that guy ran to the neighbor's house and he hid under a truck and when they closed in on him, he ran into the woman's house."
An elderly woman and her daughter were inside the home at the time. The daughter was able escape and get help.
"This neighborhood, it's always been a crime neighborhood watch, we've always watched out for one another and everything, and now it's just like I just feel like it's unsafe to live right here," McCuen said.
But one thing that doesn't seem to surprise the neighbors is the suspect taken into custody.
Mandy McCuen knows Claeys, and she says, "When things don't go his way, he gets really hostile. He's a violent person."
Claeys was just released from prison back in August of 2010 for drug and theft charges, but he's been in and out of prison since 2002 for a host of charges ranging from assault and battery with intent to kill to disorderly conduct.
"He's a menace to this neighborhood when he's out here," McCuen said.
But even with Claeys behind bars, neighbors say the community no longer feels very safe.
"I've always felt protected, but after last night, I don't know who's going to kick in my door," McCuen said.
Claeys is being held without bond at the Aiken County Jail. He is facing several charges, including burglary, attempted murder, possession of a weapon and kidnapping.
The victim, Oscar Sanchez-Espinoza, is recovering from a gunshot wound to the head but is expected to be fine.
Saturday, June 9, 2012
LANGLEY, S.C. -- Aiken County deputies tell us a man was shot in the head on Gray Street in Langley on Saturday.
That victim has been identified as 23-year-old Oscar Sanchez Espinoza of Gray Street.
The suspect has been identified as 37-year-old Kevin Claeys of the 2600 block of Augusta Road.
Claeys has been charged with attempted murder, pointing and presenting a firearm, first-degree burglary, possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime and two counts of kidnapping.
According to an incident report, Aiken County deputies received a call about a disturbance with a gun at the Augusta Road home.
A deputy patrolling the area heard a gunshot coming from a home off Gray Street and that's where he found a woman holding up the victim.
The woman told deputies the victim, Sanchez-Espinoza, had been shot in the face.
The woman claims she and the victim were outside eating when the suspect came from around the back of the home and forced them inside.
According to the report, when Sanchez-Espinoza turned around to look at the suspect, he was shot.
Deputies say the victim ran toward Jackson Street.
Officials say the suspect then broke into a home on Jackson Street where two women were living. One of the women was able to call 911 and the other escaped.
Aiken County deputies surrounded the home and were able to take the suspect into custody.
Aiken County investigators say a motive for the incident has not been established and the victim does not have life-threatening injuries.
We will have lots more from the scene on News 12 at 6 o'clock and 11.