Crime & Courts

Unsolved Carolinas: The Disappearance Of Daquan Terrell Williams

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready… When Daquan Terrell Williams went missing from Walterboro, South Carolina on January 8, 2011, he was an aspiring musician who lived off of Green Pond Highway in Colleton County. His disappearance remains unsolved – and no one has faced prosecution for the violent act…

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

When Daquan Terrell Williams went missing from Walterboro, South Carolina on January 8, 2011, he was an aspiring musician who lived off of Green Pond Highway in Colleton County. His disappearance remains unsolved – and no one has faced prosecution for the violent act that precipitated it.

Known as “Black Dot,” Williams celebrated his 19th birthday on Christmas Day 2010. Two weeks later, an altercation erupted near the intersection of Koth and Baker streets, just outside Walterboro’s town limits. Gunshots rang out, injuring two men – including Williams and Christopher Justin Chapman. By the time authorities arrived, the scene had dispersed, and Williams was never seen or heard from again.

Initial reports indicated Williams was shot in the leg.

Emmanuel Buckner, an alleged gang member, was identified as a suspect in the shooting. An investigation revealed he, Chapman and Williams had once been friends, but something “turned bad quick.”

Court records revealed Buckner and Chapman were tied to criminal activity – and Buckner was reportedly linked to the notorious ‘Cowboys’ gang. But the only violation on Williams’ record was for littering.

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In the days that followed Williams’ disappearance, his aunt – Eartha Cunningham – appealed to the public asking for information about the case.

“We do fear the worst,” Cunningham told members of the media. “That’s why we are asking someone to please come forward. We are a family that loves each other very much.”

While authorities viewed Buckner as a person of interest in the shooting, they expressed doubt as to his responsibility for Williams’ disappearance. They said the motive for the shooting remained unknown.

Six months later Daquan’s mother, Sherry Williams, told members of the media she knew in her heart that her son was dead, but she was still searching – and finding it difficult to cope without closure.

“It’s very hard to wake up in the morning and go on not knowing what happened to him,” she said.

Enlisting the assistance of the S.C. State Law Enforcement Division (SLED), the S.C. Department of Natural Resources (SCDNR), and sheriff’s offices in Charleston and Beaufort, the Colleton County sheriff’s office launched an exhaustive search – by air, land, and water using helicopters, bloodhounds, and dive teams – to no avail.

(Click to View)

Daquan Williams (National Gun Violence Memorial)

Williams stood six feet tall and weighed 175 pounds at the time of his disappearance. He had a mustache and a goatee. Both of his ears are pierced and he has a scar on his right elbow. He would be thirty-two years old today.

Following the January 2011 shooting, Buckner was charged with attempted murder and subsequently turned himself into authorities. The indictment accused him of shooting Chapman. No charges were filed in connection with the shooting of Williams.

The attempted murder charge filed on January 25, 2011 was dropped in February 2013 at the discretion of the S.C. fourteenth circuit solicitor’s office. Three years later, following a traffic stop, Buckner attempted to evade authorities and was found to be in possession of cocaine and methamphetamine. When the case went to trial in 2019, Buckner was represented by attorney Robert Bonds – who would later become a circuit court judge.

The jury was unable to arrive at a verdict on charges of possession and trafficking in narcotics but found Buckner guilty of failure to stop for a blue light. He was sentenced to two years in prison for that charge alone – and subsequently released in October 2020.

“The legal issues that arose in this case included warrantless searches of automobiles and improper inventory searches of automobiles by the sheriff’s department,” Bonds said.

The lead attorney for the prosecution was Alex Murdaugh – who at the time was a volunteer for the solicitor’s office. While Murdaugh assisted his father, former solicitor Randolph Murdaugh III, with a handful of other cases, this is the only case he led. Because it ended in a mistrial, the drug charges against Buckner filed in 2016 are still awaiting adjudication.    

Friends and family members continue their search for answers in Daquan Williams’ disappearance. He is described as someone who was humble and respectful – always smiling. Comments on a gun violence memorial page erected in his honor speak as to how much he continues to be missed.

“I pray your family gets justice soon,” one commenter noted.

Anyone with information related to Williams’ disappearance is encouraged to contact the Colleton County sheriff’s office at 843-782-4420.

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ABOUT THIS SERIES …

Unsolved Carolinas – sponsored by our friends at Bamberg Legal – is a series by FITSNews devoted to shining a spotlight on cases which have fallen off the front page. We hope to tell the stories of those individuals who are seeking answers and justice on behalf of their lost loved ones. We will dive deeper into their stories, get to know them through their families and friends and hopefully help find answers for those they have left behind.

In every unsolved case, someone out there could know something that provides a missing link – a critical clue that could bring peace to a family in pain and help them write the next chapter of their stories (even if it is the final chapter). If you know someone who is missing – or has been a victim of an unsolved homicide – email their story to research@fitsnews.com.

The more stories we share, the more hope we can spread…

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR …

Callie Lyons (Provided)

Callie Lyons is a journalist, researcher, and author whose investigative work can be found in media outlets, publications, and documentaries all over the world – most recently in the Parisian newspaper Le Monde and a German documentary for ProSieben. Lyons also appears in Citizen Sleuth – a 2023 documentary exploring the genre of true crime.

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1 comment

Curious March 28, 2024 at 12:18 pm

Not trying in any way to diminish the importance of Mr Williams’ disappearance. His family surely misses him and deserves relief or closure, whichever can be provided.

Closer to home, we have the case of Peter Sean Harley, who was in the infamous Alvin S Glenn Detention Center near Columbia. He has been missing since October 11, 2023 and as far as I can tell, has not been found yet. As I seem to recall, Mr Harley had some mental health issues and was in ASGDC on minor charges. His mother, Ms Boney, went to Alvin S Glenn to try and bond him out of jail. She was told he had been taken to an area hospital for some type of injury. Supposedly, she paid his bond and Mr Harley was released from the hospital, as I understand it, but was never heard from again by his mother. Browsing local lists of missing persons, I gather that Richland County Sheriff’s Dept is not trying hard to find him, due to a dearth of information regarding Mr Harley’s disappearance. Was he located and media never told us? Is he still missing?
What is the deal?

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