“Pickens County Sheriff’s Office Closes Homicide Investigation at Greenville-Pickens Speedway as Murder/Suicide “

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The Pickens County Sheriff’s Office has completed the investigation into the deaths of two small children and their mother following the discovery of their bodies in a black colored Jeep Patriot that had been parked on the property of the Greenville- Pickens Speedway.

The incident which occurred on Thursday, July 13, 2017, was the tragic conclusion in the events that started a couple of hours earlier with the investigation of a woman later identified as Meredith Rahme (28yoa) that was shot and killed in a parking garage located in downtown Greenville.

Detectives from the Pickens County Sheriff’s Office have determined that Jessica Edens (36yoa), the mother of the two children, ages 5 and 9, went into her parent’s home the day before the shootings and stole a .40 caliber handgun while the parents were out of town.

That weapon which was legally owned by the parents is believed to be the same weapon used in the Greenville murder and the murder/suicide that subsequently occurred inside the shooter’s vehicle while parked in Pickens County.

The Sheriff’s Office has reviewed telephone records obtained via Search Warrants that have confirmed that Mrs. Edens became distraught following a Family Court preceding that was held earlier the same week prior to the Thursday shootings.

Texts messages and other written content clearly indicate that Mrs. Edens developed a plan in the next couple of days that she felt would cause everlasting consequences for her husband-Benjamin Edens.

The investigation has confirmed that Mrs. Edens drove her vehicle directly from the parking garage in Greenville just moments after Ms. Rahme was murdered to the site where it was later discovered by a passing motorist at the speedway.

Based on a phone call made by Mrs. Edens to her husband while he was in the presence of Greenville authorities, along with other evidence and observations at the scene, it is believed that the children were shot while seated in the rear cargo area of the SUV. There were no signs of a struggle.

Detectives feel that the children were shot before Mrs. Edens placed what would be her final phone call to her husband and then she took her own life as she sat in the back seat of the Jeep.

As previously reported, first responding deputies found the vehicle in a locked condition with the engine running. Deputies used a baton to break the driver’s side window in order to gain access to the interior.

Both children and their mother were all deceased at the scene when deputies arrived and gained entry into the vehicle.

The Sheriff’s Office attended the autopsies conducted by the Pickens County Coroner the following day at which time it was confirmed that each victim had a single gunshot wound to the head.

Sheriff Rick Clark stated… 

“As we struggle to understand how a parent could possibly come to a decision such as this, we have to focus on tomorrow and the opportunity to provide services and solutions to those that feel that their life and the lives of their loved ones must end in order to find peace. 

We live in a stressful world during difficult times but there are resources that stand ready to offer help and assist you if you feel that you have no other options left in life. 

Please reach out to law enforcement so that we can be the bridge to lead you to a road of recovery. In time, you will see that all things come to pass and you too can become a stronger person with hope and faith in a brighter future. 

All of us need a helping hand from time to time as we walk through life and asking for help is not a sign of weakness that any of us should be ashamed of”. 

The Pickens County Sheriff’s Office would like to publicly thank our colleagues at the Greenville Police Department for their cooperation and support throughout this heartbreaking investigation.


“Pickens County Sheriff’s Office Confirms Homicide Investigation is Connected to Greenville Murder “

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The Pickens County Sheriff’s Office has continued to investigate the tragic deaths of three victims found inside a black colored Jeep SUV that was parked at the Greenville Pickens Speedway near Hwy 124 and Calhoun Memorial Hwy.

Late Thursday afternoon, a description of the vehicle had been provided to the Sheriff’s Office from Greenville authorities shortly after officers from the Greenville City Police Department located a deceased female that had been shot at her vehicle in a downtown parking garage.

A witness provided the description of the suspect vehicle to Greenville Police to include a license plate number that provided additional leads linking back to Pickens County.

As law enforcement agencies within Pickens County searched various locations for the vehicle, the Sheriff’s Office received information from a passing motorist that a dark colored SUV matching the description was backed up to a chain-link fence at the Greenville Pickens Speedway.

Pickens County Sheriff’s deputies arrived on the scene just before 7:00pm and as they approached the SUV they observed an adult female and two small children inside the vehicle that were unresponsive.

The vehicle was running and was locked thus requiring the deputies to break the driver’s side window to gain access to the interior.

All three occupants were determined to be deceased at the scene with wounds that were visually consistent with gunshots. A .40 caliber, semi-automatic handgun was recovered from the interior of the vehicle.

As the investigation continued throughout most of the night, it was determined that the adult female is the mother of the two deceased children whom have different biological fathers.

The mother was currently separated from her husband who is the father of one of the two children.

Forensic detectives from the Sheriff’s Office were in attendance at the autopsies conducted on the three Pickens County victims earlier today. Evidence and observations from those examinations have confirmed that all three victims were shot one time near the neck/head area.

The Sheriff’s Office is still collecting information and conducting interviews this afternoon. The investigation will remain open and active until further forensic testing can be completed and all interviews have been conducted.

The investigation thus far supports the theory that the motive and connection between the two incidents stems from the broken marriage and the subsequent domestic challenges associated with that break up.

The Greenville victim is not a relative to the three victims found deceased in Pickens County. Additional questions regarding the relationship between the Greenville victim and the three victims located in Pickens County should be directed to the Greenville Police Department.

Inquiries regarding the identities of the deceased parties should be directed to the Pickens County Coroner’s Office.


“Two Juveniles Charged with Burning Cateechee Mill “

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The Pickens County Sheriff’s Office has charged two juveniles this afternoon following the investigation into the circumstances surrounding a fire on Thursday, July 6, 2017, that destroyed an abandoned mill commonly referred to as the Cateechee Mill.

The Sheriff’s Office first received reports of the structure fire at approximately 1:30pm on Thursday afternoon necessitating the response of multiple fire departments in the effort to extinguish the flames that had fully engulfed the entire facility.

Detectives from the Pickens County Sheriff’s Office investigated several leads that ultimately led to two juveniles that have been identified and charged with the intentional setting of the fire.

Both juveniles have cooperated with authorities and the investigation has determined that the fire occurred after a paper document was lit with a cigarette lighter and thrown onto the floor where the fire ultimately was able to grow and spread throughout the structure.

Due to the age of both male, juveniles who are currently between the ages of 8 and 14 years old they have been released to the custody of their parents pending court proceedings that will be scheduled and heard in Family Court for the charges of Arson 3rd Degree and Unlawful Entry into an Enclosed Area.

Sheriff Rick Clark stated…

“Thankfully, no one was physically injured as a result of this incident. The public should not lose sight of the fact that Pickens County is blessed to have a population of adolescents that will one day mature and become outstanding citizens for our communities.

These two kids obviously made a poor choice and they will have to be held accountable for their actions but that does not prevent us from lifting them in prayer in hopes that others will learn from this clear example of poor judgment”.

The Sheriff’s Office does not expect any additional arrests based on the investigation thus far.


“Pickens County Sheriff’s Office Assists in Fire Investigation at Cateechee Mill”

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The Pickens County Sheriff’s Office is currently assisting multiple fire departments from Pickens County that have responded to a structure fire at the old Cateechee Mill on Cateechee Trail not far from the City of Norris.

An area resident called at approximately 1:30pm this afternoon and stated that the building was on fire and that the fire department needed to be notified.

Resources from the following fire departments were on scene attempting to contain and beat down the fire:

  • Norris Fire Department
  • Central Fire Department
  • Six Mile Fire Department
  • Liberty Fire Department
  • Clemson University Fire Department

The old facility is not operational and the extent of damages is unknown at the time of this release but expected to be substantial. The nature and cause of fire is unknown as the investigation is preliminary in nature.

The Sheriff’s Office has received information that several children were seen in the street not far from the facility near the time when the fire may have started but it is unknown as to whether they are in any way connected to the incident.

The Sheriff’s Office is assisting the resources of the fire services and there is no additional information to be released at this stage into the investigation.