Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Georgetown man charged, mother killed by sword

News - Local
Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2010
Georgetown man charged, mother killed by sword
By Tonya Root - troot@thesunnews.com

Georgetown County police charged a 29-year-old man in the death of his mother, who was found slain with a sword, according to officials.

Jonathan Maurice White was charged Monday with murder in the death of Laura Ferrante, 51, said Lt. Neil Johnson, with the Georgetown County Sheriff's Office.

Police found Ferrante in the home she shared with White and a mentally challenged adult at 531 Prior Drive, said Georgetown County Coroner Kenny Johnson.

Police found Ferrante's body on the floor of the home with a large "cutting injury to her left head and neck," Kenny Johnson said.

An autopsy is set for later today at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston.

The other adult in the home went to a neighbor's house, who notified police that something had occurred at the home and gave officers a description of the 2000 Ford Taurus that White left in, according to police.

A deputy responding to the incident saw White driving north on U.S. 17 about a mile north of the city limits of Georgetown and stopped him just after midnight Monday morning, Neil Johnson said.

The incident began around midnight when Ferrante and White argued, Johnson said. At some point the argument became physical, which led to Ferrante's death by her being cut multiple times with a sword.

"It was an argument between him and his mother," Neil Johnson said, but did not elaborate on the motive.

White is being held at the Georgetown County Detention Center.

A criminal history from the State Law Enforcement Division showed White was arrested in March 1999, September 2003 and April 2006 on various misdemeanor violations that included traffic offenses, trespassing and first-offense criminal domestic violence.

White was arrested in August 2006 and charged with misdemeanor trespassing and a felony charge of assaulting a police officer while resisting arrest, according to SLED records.

For the felony, he was sentenced to four years in prison, which was suspended for time served and two years on probation.

White was sentenced to 30 days in jail for a misdemeanor trespassing charge that was filed at the same time.
Contact TONYA ROOT at 843-444-1723

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