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Judge denies bond for Covington suspect in 2020 death of Oxford man
South Carolina man sentenced on charges in 2020 shootings, high-speed chase with deputies

COVINGTON, Ga. — A Newton County Superior Court judge Wednesday denied bond for a Covington man suspected of striking the blows that caused the death of a 54-year-old Oxford resident in August 2020.

Judge Ken Wynne denied bond for William Russell White, 30, of Covington, after hearing that he had allegedly inflicted injuries on a Walmart shopper days before a similar alleged beating of an Oxford resident that may have caused his death.

White was being held in the Newton County jail without bond on charges related to an Aug. 22 incident that preceded the death of Terry Hall at a residence on Edwards Road in Oxford.

Testimony during the bond hearing Wednesday, March 31, showed that White was in a relationship with the daughter of one of the occupants of the residence where Hall, 54, lived. 

White and the daughter have two children together and were visiting the residence Aug. 22, said Chief Assistant District Attorney Amber Dally.

While there, the suspect allegedly attacked Hall because he wrongfully suspected Hall and the mother of his children also were in a relationship, Dally said.

After the assault, Hall later suffered a cardiac arrest and died, the prosecutor said.

She said the attack also appeared to be part of a pattern involving White striking men for incidents he believed were occurring but were untrue.

Dally detailed a separate case three days before the Edwards Road incident in which White allegedly attacked a 66-year-old man in a Walmart in Walton County because White wrongly believed the man had touched his 5-year-old daughter.

She said White allegedly struck the man and broke his dentures, after which police eventually had to restrain White by using a Taser, Dally said.

However, White’s attorney, Jared Sliz, said he believed powerful drugs like methamphetamine found in the victim’s bloodstream likely led to Hall’s death.

Sliz said witnesses disagreed about who was the aggressor. In addition, the Walmart charges had not been proven, he said.

White needed the judge to set a bond so that he could earn a living from his skills as a grader for a construction company, the attorney said. 

He also was not a flight risk because of his ties to the community. He would live with his children and their mother in Loganville, and his parents live in Henry and Walton counties, Sliz said.

White also would be subject to random drug screenings, and make sure he continued to take unspecified prescriptions, the attorney said.

Wynne, however, said he believed White posed a “significant risk” if he was released and denied the request for setting a bond.

In a separate case, the judge sentenced a South Carolina man to 10 years in prison Wednesday after he pleaded guilty to charges related to a series of shootings and a high-speed chase along Ga. Highway 81 in March 2020.

Adrian Cadell Scranton, 22, of North Augusta, South Carolina, was sentenced to 25 years on probation with the first 10 to be served in confinement.

Scranton was charged in relation to a series of incidents that began March 19, 2020, when he traveled in a vehicle to meet a group of people to buy a firearm on Shadowbrook Chase Drive, according to testimony at the hearing.

Scranton subsequently began shooting at the group that was traveling in another vehicle and a chase ensued. They eventually lost the suspect and the vehicle Scranton was in stopped at a gas station where he began shooting at another vehicle.

He then led sheriff’s deputies on a chase in which his vehicle drove on the wrong side of the road and reached 90 mph, according to testimony.  

Scranton was charged with six counts each of Aggravated Assault and Possession of a Firearm During Commission of a Felony, one count of Fleeing or Attempting to Elude a Police Officer, and other charges.

Manslaughter suspect
William Russell White - photo by Special to The Covington News