Would-be burglar with famous name stuck in air shaft for hours

ORANGEBURG, SC (WIS) - A man accused of trying to break into an Orangeburg convenience store wound up getting the shaft. Or rather, wound up in the shaft. And as it turns out, he shares his name with an actor who played Shaft.

Officers were called to the Quick Pantry on Magnolia Street around 3:00am Sunday after someone reported hearing voices coming from the roof of the store.

Public Safety Capt. Mike Adams says officers who went on the roof found the air ventilation system had been taken apart. They found a man who said he had been wedged feet-first in the duct work for about three hours.

He said he had been placed in the vent by three men he didn't know. But police immediately charged 48-year-old Samuel Lee Jackson of Orangeburg with second-degree burglary after lifting him out of the duct.

"The story he told us was certainly not supported by the facts uncovered there at the scene," said Adams. "It is our belief that he intended to make entry into the building with the intent to commit a crime there."

According to the arrest report, Jackson had been under the influence of alcohol and crack cocaine. "Thank God sometimes criminals are not the smartest ones in the world," said Adams.

It took a fire truck's ladder to lower him down, but once his feet were back on solid ground, he was taken to the Orangeburg County Detention Center. Jackson was not injured.

It wasn't clear if he has an attorney yet.

Copyright 2011 WIS. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.