Fairview Heights Marine killed in South Carolina; ex-Belleville man charged

Island Packet (Hilton Head, S.C.)November 26, 2013 

A Fairview Heights native and Marine was shot to death Friday night in what authorities say was a drug deal gone wrong in South Carolina.

Marine Pfc. Jerrit Timberson, 20, formerly of Fairview Heights, was shot in Beaufort, S.C., and another Marine, a former Belleville man, has been charged in connection with the attempted robbery that left Timberson dead.

Marine Kelsey Terrell Dent, 18, formerly of Belleville, was charged with armed robbery and accused of helping to orchestrate a drug deal that became fatal.

Both Timberson and Dent were stationed at Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, public affairs officer Sgt. Marcy Sanchez said.

Timberson's wife, Champagne White-Timberson, 19, was charged with criminal conspiracy and accused of helping to plan and execute the armed robbery that left her husband, Timberson, dead of a gunshot wound, according to Beaufort Police Department Deputy Chief Dale McDorman.

The alleged drug dealer, Karl B. Lyttle, 21, has been charged with the sale and distribution of marijuana and the distribution of marijuana within the proximity of a school. Police said Lyttle met Dent and Timberson to sell them marijuana when Dent and Timberson pulled out fake guns and attempted to rob Lyttle. Lyttle pulled out a real gun and opened fire, striking Timberson several times.

Dent was arrested Friday and charged with armed robbery after he and Timberson tried to rob Lyttle on Hookstra Drive in the Mossy Oaks neighborhood of Beaufort, according to a police department release.

McDorman said White-Timberson was one of the other participants in the robbery attempt. No information on the fourth person or the drug dealer was available Monday.

When police arrived at the scene about 9:30 p.m. Friday, they found a silver sedan parked in the middle of Hookstra Drive. Timberson was in the back seat. A friend, who was uninjured, was in the driver's seat. The identity of the person in the driver's seat has not been revealed.

Timberson was taken by ambulance to Beaufort Memorial Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Dent, White-Timberson and Lyttle were being held at the Beaufort County Detention Center late Monday.

Timberson joined the Marine Corps in October 2012. A private first class, he was assigned to Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 31, according to a news release Monday from the air station.

No information about Dent's service history was made available Monday.

Neither Timberson nor Dent has a criminal record in South Carolina, according to a State Law Enforcement Division background check.

An investigation into the robbery attempt and Timberson's death by Beaufort police continues, McDorman said. Naval Criminal Investigative Service investigators were also notified of Timberson's death, according to the air station.

Neither man has a criminal record in St. Clair County.

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