A South Carolina wedding celebration led to the arrests of three people when a groomsman was reportedly jumped by two men. 35-year-old Justin McKeithan and his girlfriend were celebrating the marriage of their friends at Red’s Ice House in Sham Creek — just outside Charleston. As McKeithan was leaving the bar, he was allegedly attacked by two assailants.
The two attackers — identified as 41-year-old Leo Garcia of Wedgefield and 34-year-old Nathan Rivers of Sumter, began punching and kicking McKeithan. However, the attackers didn’t know that McKeithan was carrying a knife, which he pulled out to defend himself. Police records indicate that Garcia received a non-life-threatening puncture to his side, and Rivers sustained a non-life-threatening laceration to his arm.
During the altercation, a school teacher from Charleston, Kurt Kohler, stepped in to help whom he believed was the victim. The 28-year-old school teacher told reporters that he saw two men beating up on another man, at which point he felt compelled to help. While he was trying to break up the fight, however, Kohler received a deep one-inch cut on his knuckles. “I ran to see what was happening, and I saw one guy getting mugged,” Kohler said. “He was on his back with two guys on top of him.” “After that, I don’t know what happened.”
Investigators are still trying to determine exactly who’s responsible for this bloody incident. According to Police Inspector Chip Googe, all three of the men were carrying knives and using them on one another. The chaotic crime scene paired with uncooperative witnesses added a barrier of difficulty to the jobs of investigators.
“Rivers, Garcia and McKeithan had been stabbing each other, according to arrest affidavits, but who exactly was responsible for each other’s wounds was not clear. All of them were arrested based on Kohler’s injury and were said to have been seen carrying knives earlier that evening, the court documents stated,” wrote The Post and Courier.
Garcia, Rivers, and McKeithan have all been charged with attempted murder. Live 5 News reports that Garcia and Rivers are currently being held in the Charleston County Detention Center on $100 bond. McKeithan, the man who was allegedly attacked during the incident, was released from jail after posting $200,000 bond.
McKeithan was arrested several years ago for stabbing his girlfriend’s boyfriend. He was sentenced to 35 to 51 months in prison and was released in March 2013.