CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD)- More than a decade has passed since Joseph Hymes was murdered and deputies are still trying to determine who is responsible.
In the afternoon of April 30, 2011, Charleston County Sheriff’s Office deputies were dispatched to Pineview Road in West Ashley after Hymes’ body was found in a roadside ditch.
Days before, Hymes was spotted leaving his mother’s house on Basalm Street. She told detectives that she assumed her son was “in the downtown area hanging out with some friends.”
That was the last time the 23-year-old was seen alive.
During the investigation, a witness confirmed they heard what sounded like a firecracker late in the evening on April 29. It was later determined that the sound was of gunfire that killed Haymes.
While interviewing Hymes’ mother, she informed detectives that her son should have had his bicycle with him because he “never walks” and a few hundred dollars on him due to him just being paid. No bicycle or money was found on or near Hymes at the scene.
Detectives questioned several of the victim’s friends, but none were identified as suspects.
One of those friends was a person that Hymes’ mother said was always with her son. He told detectives that he and Hymes’ usually hung out three times per week and despite repeated calls, he never reached Hymes’ on the day of the murder.
Detectives spoke with that friend twice. The second time, he said that he was still upset about the incident and complained that he was being questioned when “the real killer was out on the street.”
After speaking with Hymes’ close friend, investigators received a Crime Stoppers tip alleging that the person who shot and killed Haymes was a known drug dealer. Deputies went to the residence multiple times to question the individual, but no one answered the door on any of the occasions.
On June 5, 2011, the individual was arrested on unrelated drug charges and questioned about his involvement in the murder of Hymes. He continually repeated that he did not know who Hymes was and had no involvement in the shooting.
An incident report states that detectives knocked on the doors in the neighborhood where Hymes was located, but no one was able to provide information to further the investigation.
The case was deemed inactive in June 2011.
Anyone with information about this case is asked to contact Crime Stoppers at 843-554-1111 or CCSO Detective Barry Goldstein at 843-554-2241.