BCSO deputies make arrest in Lady’s Island murder; teen nephew still missing

BEAUFORT COUNTY, S.C. (WSAV) – Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office reports they have arrested 16-year-old Raheem Bennett for the Nov. 21 Lady’s Island murder of Robert Blanding, 25.

Beaufort County deputies said Robert Blanding’s body was found near a drainage ditch on F & B Road in Lady’s Island.

“A forensic autopsy revealed he died as a result of multiple gunshot wounds and matter of death was deemed a homicide,” Capt. Bob Bromage with the Sheriff’s Office said.

Investigators say Blanding’s family told them he was last seen leaving his nephew Chaz Blanding’s house the night before. Chaz Blanding, 19, is still missing and is believed to be in danger.

Related story: Update: Body identified in suspicious death on Lady’s Island; family member still missing

The arrest of Bennett was made on Nov. 28 after Sheriff’s Office investigators met with a Beaufort County magistrate and presented the facts gathered in the investigation.  Bennett was charged in connection with Robert Blanding’s death for Murder and Possession of a Weapon during a Violent Crime.

Deputies located and arrested Bennett outside of a convenience store on Lady’s Island without incident. Bennett was served with the two arrest warrants and transported to the Beaufort County Detention Center, where he was incarcerated. His bond has not been set.

“The investigation is still ongoing. We are concerned, and his family’s concerned about Chaz’s safety, he’s been missing for a week now,” Bromage said.

Anyone with information regarding the murder of Robert Blanding or the whereabouts of missing and endangered person, Chaz Blanding, is encouraged to contact Sergeant Brandon Disbrow at 843-255-3407 or CrimeStoppers 1-888-CrimeSC if wishing to remain anonymous and for possible reward.

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