MATTHEW WHITMAN’S FAMILY SAYS WEALTHY BUSINESSMAN “AGGRESSIVELY INITIATED” FATAL DISPUTE
The family of Matthew Whitman – the 32-year-old nature lover who was shot to death last month in Greenville, S.C.’s infamous “Castle Killing” – is “very upset” with S.C. thirteenth circuit solicitor Walt Wilkins‘ decision not to prosecute wealthy, well-connected businessman Allen Stephenson in connection with the incident.
The family has issued a statement taking issue with that decision, alleging that Stephenson “aggressively initiated” the confrontation.
Here is the statement in its entirety …
The Whitman family is disappointed by the decision not to prosecute Allen Stephenson for the homicide death of our son, Matthew. We have waited patiently while this investigation has preceded and have been provided small pieces of information along the way. We look forward to seeing the entire investigation file now that the Solicitor’s Office claims the investigation is “over” and the Solicitor’s and Sheriff’s Offices have promised to now release it.
The pieces of information that we have been provided suggest that Mr. Stephenson actually provoked this encounter. The family’s attorneys were allowed to hear the 911 call. During that call, the 911 operator and the witness both pleaded with Mr. Stephenson to return inside since 911 and been called and law enforcement was on the way. Matthew, at worst, was simply trespassing that morning.
It is interesting that Mr. Stephenson himself was convicted of trespassing, but when he pleaded guilty, he did not have to even pay a fine and he suffered no other consequences. Mr. Stephenson’s trespassing certainly did not result in the loss of his life.
During the 911 call, Mr. Stephenson went to the balcony of his castle and fired two shots from his Kel-Tec shotgun at Matthew when Matthew was in no way threatening any person on Mr. Stephenson’s estate. Then, for some inexplicable reason, he decided to leave the safety of his castle, and go down the stairs around the property to confront Matthew in the yard where he fired numerous shots from his high capacity shotgun at close range. It is believed that at least three of those shotgun blasts struck Matthew, leading to his death. This seems to be a confrontation that Mr. Stephenson aggressively initiated, against the pleas of both the 911 operator and the witness.
We are therefore very upset that the Solicitor’s Office has chosen not to prosecute Mr. Stephenson for his actions.
We are anxious to hear all of the complete facts uncovered during this investigation and to compare all of the evidence gathered by law enforcement with the additional evidence we have gathered ourselves. After that, we will make a determination whether or not we will proceed with a civil action. Any questions can be directed to attorneys David Price in Greenville or Robert Rikard in Columbia.
This case is far from over …