KINGSTREE, S.C. (WCSC) - Investigators say they are bringing “the full force of law enforcement at all levels to bear” to find the person responsible for gunning down a U.S. Postal Service employee in Andrews.
Irene Pressley, 64, was found shot to death Monday afternoon in her SUV on Morrisville Road in Williamsburg County. United States Postal Inspection Service spokesperson Jessica Adams says Pressley was on her mail delivery route at the time she was shot.
“We’ve assembled a task force of more than 70 people to conduct this investigation,” U.S. Postal Inspector in Charge David McGinnis said at a Friday morning news conference in Kingstree. “We’re bringing the full force of law enforcement at all levels to bear in this massive investigation.”
He called the investigation of violent crimes against postal employees a top priority.
“Nothing we do is more important,” he said.
Deputies are working 12-hour shifts for 24-hour coverage, Williamsburg County Sheriff Steven Gardner said.
“We want our citizens to know they area safe,” Gardner said.
He appealed to the community to help with tips that could lead to an arrest.
“In order for us to solve problems as such, we need help for the community,” Gardner said. “We can do a lot of technical things and we can do a lot of things right when it comes down to some things. But the one part that is integral that we need help and I plead to you is from our community. You have to give us information to work with.”
Williamsburg County deputies, the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the U.S. Attorney’s Office are working together in the investigation, McGinnis said.
But earlier this week, Adams said if the person responsible for Pressley’s death is caught and convicted, they could face a federal death penalty.
He said that the investigation was ongoing and investigators would not take questions during the news conference.
Anyone who may have been in the Morrisville area at the time of the shooting or who may have seen anything that could be related to the crime is asked to call Crime Stoppers of the Lowcountry at 1-888-CRIME-SC or the U.S. Postal Inspection Service 1-877-876-2455.
In the meantime, residents in the Bloomingvale community near Andrews have been placing white bows on their mailboxes in memory of Pressley.
McGinnis said she had worked for the U.S. Postal Service for nearly 22 years.
Meanwhile, Henryhand Funeral Home of Andrews posted funeral arrangements for Pressley on its website.
A public viewing is scheduled for Friday from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Chapel of Grace, 118 Conifer Street in Andrews.
Her funeral will be held Saturday at 1 p.m. at St. John AME Church, at 1297 Rhems Road in Andrews.