Three charged with attempted murder in Shem Creek wedding day brawl

Three charged with attempted murder in Shem Creek wedding day brawl

MT. PLEASANT, SC (WCSC) - A wedding celebration at a popular Shem Creek restaurant over the weekend ended with three arrests for attempted murder after an out of town man who was reportedly jumped pulled out a knife to fend off his attackers.

Authorities say the incident occurred outside Red's Ice House on Shem Creek Saturday around 1:35 a.m.

An incident report states Justin McKeithan, 35, of Raleigh was in the process of leaving the restaurant with his girlfriend when he was jumped from behind by 41-year-old Leo Garcia of Wedgefield and 34-year-old Nathan Rivers of Sumter. McKeithan told police he fought back using a pocket knife, wounding the two suspects.

Police say Garcia suffered a puncture wound to his left side and had his left ear partially severed, while Rivers had a deep laceration to his right arm.

A bystander who attempted to help break up the fight was stabbed in the hand by McKeithan, officers say.

A bouncer at the restaurant told police he came to the front of the business after hearing customers screaming that people had been stabbed. He then jumped on McKeithan and kicked the knife out of his hand.

McKeithan, who had several cuts on his knuckles and a busted lip from the brawl, told police he had no previous altercations with the suspects and did not know why he was attacked.

Several witnesses told officers Garcia and Rivers were in the bar most of the night trying to instigate fights. Both men were kicked out of the bar, but later returned.

Police say they attempted to get security footage of the incident, but the brawl occurred just outside of the camera's range.

Garcia and Rivers were both arrested and charged with attempted murder. They are being held at the Charleston County Detention Center on a $100,000 bond.

Mt. Pleasant police say McKeithan was also charged with attempted murder for stabbing a victim during the altercation. He was released on a $200,000 bond.

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