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Greer police want to talk to Kohlhepp about Blue Ridge Savings Bank unsolved triple-murder case

By Jim Fair, Editor
Published on Monday, November 7, 2016

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The Blue Ridge Savings triple-murder case remains unsolved after 13 years.
 

The Blue Ridge Savings triple-murder case remains unsolved after 13 years.

 

The Greer Police Department wants to talk to Todd Kohlhepp, the real estate agent from Moore, who confessed and has been charged in the 2003 Superbike Motorsports quadruple homicide.

Greer investigators are interested in another 13-year-old unsolved triple murder case – the May 16, 2003 cold-blooded killings at Blue Ridge Savings Bank, on frontage road near Highway Exit 14 on I-85.

The Superbike Motorsports killings were on Nov. 6, 2003, six months before the Blue Ridge Savings Bank.

“We have reached out to the authorities and told them our interest to talk with Todd Kohlhepp,” said a Greer police department spokesperson familiar with the Blue Ridge Saving Bank killings and subsequent investigations.

“Is it a coincidence the murders were done nearly 30 miles apart in daylight with no witnesses,” the police spokesman asked rhetorically.

Greer officials said Spartanburg County is busy with the ongoing investigation. SLED, the FBI and Homeland Security has also joined the investigation.

“They have their hands full,” the Greer police spokesman said of the multi-task force investigation at Kohlhepp’s compound.

There are some parallels to the Superbike murders and Blue Ridge Saving Bank.

• The bike shop and Blue Ridge Savings were somewhat isolated.

• There were no witnesses to either shooting and the video from the cameras at Blue Ridge Savings were missing.

• The escape routes offered opportunities to disappear with minimum detection. The best GPD can come up with for a getaway vehicle is a Red Oldsmobile Alero, but that is not a positive identification.

• Both shootings were execution-style multiple homicides.

• Both shootings have been featured on national crime broadcasts asking assistance in remembering details that would provide clues.

• Kohlhepp was a student at USC Upstate and “Eb” Barnes, 61, was a physics professor and coordinator of the program at USC Upstate. Margaret Barnes, 58, was a receptionist and coordinator for the National Beta Club, which appears to have little connection, according to authorities.

USC Upstate officials have been contacted if Kohlpepp and Eb Barnes crossed paths during Kohlpepp's enrollment, but they have not responded by the time of this post.

Spartanburg County Sheriff Chuck Wright said Kohlhepp, 45, is talking to investigators, and they are looking into other criminal cases. “He is talking to us. We know some stuff,” Wright told the media Monday.

Early in the investigation Wright surmised that Kohlhepp may be a “serial killer.”

Kohlhepp is facing a kidnapping charge after a missing Anderson County woman, 30, was found alive last Thursday but chained by the neck in a large storage container on Kohlhepp’s 96-acre property off Woodruff Road near Woodruff.

The woman told authorities Charles Carver, Kohlhepp shot her boyfriend who had been missing since the end of August. Carver's body was found on Kohlhepp's property Friday, though Kohlhepp has not been charged in that death at this time.

One other set of human remains that so far have not been identified. A second possible gravesite is being investigated.

Kohlhepp is tied to seven homicides in all, but law enforcement is looking at other properties he owns or has owned, and they are not limiting the search to South Carolina, according to law enforcement officials.

Wright said, through media reports, Kohlhepp confessed about the bike shop killings after being allowed to speak to his mother and give her a picture of himself, and to transfer money to a girl he is helping to raise, to pay for her college education.

Kohlepp is a registered sex offender based on a kidnapping conviction in Arizona. His plea to the kidnapping charge was for exchanged for a sexual assault charge being dropped.

Kohlhepp’s 1986 rape of a young teenage girl in Tempe, Ariz., earned him a 15-year sentence in prison. He was released from prison Nov. 24, 2001, according to the Arizona Department of Corrections.

He moved to South Carolina and built a real estate business with offices in Moore and Woodruff.

 

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