MONCKS CORNER, SC (WCSC) - A Berkeley County man has been found guilty of murdering his wife.
Tito Harris, 37, has been sentenced to life in prison for fatally shooting his wife in August of 2009. After deliberating for less than an hour, a Berkeley County jury found Harris guilty of murder in the shooting death of Shantay Harris, his wife of 14 years.
Circuit Court Judge Deadra L. Jefferson sentenced Harris to the maximum sentence of life in prison in the 2009 shooting death.
Solicitor Scarlett A. Wilson applauded the court's sentence saying,"We are grateful that the Judge sent a strong message to abusers. This shows the community that those who stalk and kill their families will not be treated as anything less than what they truly are: vicious murderers"
Senior Assistant Solicitor Anne Williams said that at approximately 5 a.m, on August 19, 2009, Harris entered his wife's home in Moncks Corner and shot her to death in front of one of the couple's children, an 11-year-old boy.
The victim was killed by a single gunshot wound to the head. When Harris arrived, the victim's sister hid in a closet and called 911. After hearing the shots and then finding the victim, she attempted to perform CPR on the victim.
Moncks Corner police officers say they responded and apprehended Harris two blocks from the home after observing the defendant driving away from the home. According to authorities, Harris had the murder weapon in his possession when he was stopped by one of the responding officers. Harris proceeded to give a statement to officers about his involvement.
Williams said, "We feel for the victim's children, not only did they lose their mother, but one had to watch helplessly while his mother was murdered and the other child, a 12 year old boy called 911 to tell them their father had shot their mother. The children, both of whom testified at trial, showed enormous courage."
Prior to the murder, Harris had been prohibited from entering the home by court order; he will not be eligible for parole.