GOOSE CREEK, SC (WCSC) - An armed robber who was caught by police officers hiding underneath a home in Goose Creek was sentenced to life in prison.
Solicitor Scarlett A. Wilson announced on Thursday that a Berkeley County jury convicted Chris Nathaniel Williams for a May 2016 armed robbery that took place at the Hamlets subdivision.
According to prosecutors, he was also convicted of two counts of kidnapping, assault and battery, and possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime in connection to that robbery.
"That same jury also convicted him for a June 10, 2016 attempted armed robbery, criminal conspiracy, and possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime at the same residence," according to the Ninth Solicitor's Office.
On May 7, 2016, homeowners were leaving their car when Williams attacked and restrained one of the victims from behind before cutting him on the hand with a knife.
"Williams then struggled to take a money bag from the other victim before he fled down the driveway," prosecutors said.
The victims then set up a security surveillance, and a few weeks later provided law enforcement with footage of Williams suspiciously showing back up at the residence.
"As a result, Goose Creek Police began a diligent undercover operation that lasted several days," prosecutors said."Over the course of the operation, Williams was seen on numerous days by undercover officers and also captured by police cameras in the area."
The solicitor's office say on June 10, Williams and a co-defendant were seen arriving in the neighborhood and again walking to the victims' residence.
According to authorities, the two men hid in bushes in the backyard and waited for the victims to return home.
"As the victims' vehicle pulled into the driveway, Williams and the co-defendant rushed from the bushes towards the vehicle before being intercepted by Goose Creek Police who were hiding under the house next door," the solicitor's office said. "Williams and the co-defendant threw a taser and a can of mace back into the bushes."
According to prosecutors, Williams also had a knife similar to the one used in the May 7 robbery.
"A third co-defendant was arrested for both robberies and identified as being the get-away driver and lookout. She has pled guilty and is awaiting sentencing."
Williams had been previously convicted of armed robbery, housebreaking, assault, and domestic violence.
"Based on his criminal history the Solicitor's Office filed a Notice of Intent to Seek Life Without Parole which, in turn, subjected Williams to a mandatory life sentence upon his convictions," prosecutors said.
"The verdict justly reflects the nature of Williams' actions and the sentence was appropriate based on his record and the fear he subjected the victims to over the course of five weeks," said Assistant Solicitor Chip Cannon.
Williams was sentenced to to life without the possibility of parole for the armed robbery, two counts of kidnapping, and attempted armed robbery.
On each of the remaining charges he was given five years to run concurrent with the life sentences.