Crime | News | South Carolina

Arrest Made in South Carolina Gay Man's Murder

Stephen Andrew Moller, 18, has been arrested and charged with murder in the death of Sean Kennedy, whom I posted about earlier today.

Kennedy had left Brew's Bar when a man jumped out of a car and punched him, knocking him to the ground. Kennedy died nearly 17 hours later of injuries sustained during the assault.

Kennedy2The arrest warrant for Moller said "investigators believe the assault was due to the victim's sexual orientation" according to GreenvilleOnline.

The paper reports: "Master Deputy Michael Hildebrand said the case has been turned over to the FBI who will determine whether or not to proceed with a hate crime investigation. South Carolina doesn't have a statute that covers hate crimes, so a federal agency would have to make the charges, according to the Sheriff's Office. Hildebrand said that witnesses and 'other investigative means' led investigators to Moller. Through the investigation, deputies believe that Moller made a comment about Kennedy's sexual orientation either before or during the assault, according to Hildebrand and the warrant."

Moller is being detained without bond at Greenville County Detention Center.

Arrest Made In Connection With Death Of Man At Bar [news channel 7 - greenville]
Taylors man arrested in bar death [greenville online]
Thanks to Towleroad readers for pointing me to the updates on this.

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  1. He's kinda cute in a thuggish, skinhead sort of way. They'll love him in prison.

    Posted by: Brian | May 18, 2007 12:12:37 PM

  2. Another perp who looks like he's several cards short of a full deck.

    Posted by: anon | May 18, 2007 12:13:30 PM

  3. Yes, kinda cute, Brian, in that thuggish way. Probably a real asshole, though. Bet he didn't expect a punch would kill (which you gotta admit is flukey). (R I P Kennedy).

    Posted by: Joe T. | May 18, 2007 12:29:36 PM

  4. One punch is all it takes.My brother was murdered this very same way.Leaving a straight bar.

    Posted by: GregB | May 18, 2007 12:44:51 PM

  5. I swear, I never heard about that, until now. (But sorry to hear it, re. your brother, my guy).

    Posted by: Joe T. | May 18, 2007 12:58:32 PM

  6. I'm just glad Moller is old enough to be an adult. Still, where are his parents? What the hell did they teach their kid?

    Posted by: Rob (lrdarystar) | May 18, 2007 1:18:03 PM

  7. This is so, so sad. A young guy just out trying to have fun, another young guy, albeit a stupid one, making a horrible mistake. It breaks the heart, truly, and I feel so badly for both these boys' parents.

    Posted by: sw | May 18, 2007 1:50:37 PM

  8. This is so sad.

    The husband grew up in Greenville and his parents still live there. I love going down to Greenville to visit the in-laws with our son. Our second son was born a week ago and hasn't had a chance to make a visit yet. It's a very pretty small city with a recently spruced up downtown (if you get a chance, try a very good restaurnt called "O"). We aren't particularly social when we go down, we tend just to spend time with the family, but the few people we've met in the city have been very friendly. We've taken our son to the city's playgrounds as well as to the mall and played with him in the mall's children's play area without incident. Scary to think stuff like this can happen.

    What a shame. I'm very happy they made an arrest.

    Posted by: Jonas | May 18, 2007 1:52:49 PM

  9. What Moller did was not a mistake. He committed a crime.

    Posted by: David | May 18, 2007 2:59:08 PM

  10. I'm glad gay men don't have the stereotype of being weak. Oh wait we do. My f%ckin' god! When you have responses like that of Brian's and SW's I can see why people think gay men are weak.

    I feel sorry for what happened to Sean Kennedy and those that loved him. It's very tragic.

    Posted by: Jack! | May 18, 2007 3:50:50 PM

  11. Hey Jack - you don't have to be weak to get raped in prison. You just have to be outnumbered.

    Yes, it's tragic. That's why I'm glad the perp will suffer during incarceration.

    Nothing weak about that.

    Posted by: Brian | May 18, 2007 4:55:55 PM

  12. Brian I highly doubt he'll be raped in prison. I think he'll be getting a lot of high-fives and congratulations.

    Posted by: Jack! | May 18, 2007 6:43:26 PM

  13. I live in this area and this murder is a result of the hate that is preached from the pulpits of many of the churches here. This area is also overwhelmingly Republican. When there is so much hate being preached this type of crime is bound to happen. Most people don't die from it. Most people are just severely beaten. Believe me, this crime will not affect the majority of people here in the least. Most of them will say the guy had it coming. It's a sad fact. This is not a friendly area of the country. Although tonight on the news the police were speaking intelligently of this crime which was quite surprising. I really feel for Sean's family and friends. It sounds like he was a great person.

    Posted by: TODD | May 18, 2007 8:53:51 PM

  14. As the brother of the victim..i just want everyone to know he was an amazing person..he left a footprint on the heart of everyone he came in contact with...anyone who has ever met sean...knows he was a special kid...i love you sean...RIP

    Posted by: John Kennedy | May 18, 2007 10:03:39 PM

  15. John, our thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family. This was such a terrible and unnecessary tragedy.

    Thank you for taking the time to stop by here to share something so personal with us.

    Posted by: Zeke | May 18, 2007 10:18:29 PM

  16. Todd: How do you know that that was the motive for the crime? Do you even know if Moller was a church-goer? Maybe he picked up homophobia from rap music, for all we know.

    Posted by: Joe T. | May 19, 2007 12:15:34 AM

  17. John: All the best and God bless your brother's memory, and you and your family getting through this rough period. -Joe

    Posted by: Joe T. | May 19, 2007 12:20:49 AM

  18. John, I hope you and your family get justice for this terrible injustice done to your brother. This loss will never make sense, but may your brother's spirit be as a catalyst: for sowing tolerance where, today, hate deepens its roots.

    I also hope I speak for many here when I share with you that, should you choose to create a foundation or memorial for your brother, you'd have plenty of support -- spiritual and financial -- as we can give it.

    Bless your family.

    Posted by: Becks07 | May 19, 2007 1:12:02 AM

  19. Peace be with your family during this tragic time.

    That said. It is ok to yell and scream. It is ok to break something. It is ok to rage against the injustice of it all. Don't hold back the tears but also don't hold back just yelling out your frustration, pain, and anger. It is very natural, normal, healthy, and human.

    Posted by: pacificoceanboy | May 19, 2007 3:10:32 PM

  20. Ps

    I didn't mean yell at each other. :-) I menat yelling at the sky.... just yelling and letting your anger and pain over this out.

    Though I am not a big supporter of the bible, I will aknowledge that the way some in their mouring were portrayed is very healthy.....drop to the ground, rub dust in your hair, wail away and let it all out. do not bottle up your justifiable feelings. You do not have to "suck it up". You do not have to "get over it". It is perfectly natural and healthy to be angry to be furious.

    Posted by: pacificoceanboy | May 19, 2007 3:17:43 PM

  21. Becks07,

    We have decided to start a gathering of money to give to a charity or to help with starting a bill to get laws agianst hate-crime punishment...not just agianst gays..just agianst hate crimes peroid. weve told everyone that would like to give flowers instead donate to the charity or bill in seans name. We believe sean died for a reason. and the reason will change the world.

    Posted by: John Kennedy | May 19, 2007 6:35:01 PM

  22. I was the victim of a gay bashing in 2001. It chills me to think how easily I could have died. I've created a website for victims of gay bashing.

    Posted by: Rico | May 20, 2007 12:22:34 AM

  23. John, my condolences to you and your family too... what happened to Sean was really tragic, wrong and unneccesary. I am very glad that they arrested the hateful person that committed the crime. Please let us know details of the charity or the bill once they are established so that we can help where we can.

    Posted by: CK | May 20, 2007 1:22:14 PM

  24. My condolences also to John and the other friends and family of Sean. Stay strong in the difficult times ahead.

    Posted by: EireKev | May 20, 2007 5:14:32 PM

  25. I am sorry for your tragic loss John - my heart goes out to you and your family. You honor your brother by posting here and sounding the battle cry. Tough times ahead but you'll get through it.

    Posted by: Giovanni | May 20, 2007 6:41:59 PM

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