From our News Partners at WCBD-TV:

Charleston County, SC -  On April 22, 2014, a Charleston County jury found 35 year old Shawndell Q. McClenton guilty two counts of First Degree Burglary and one count of Breaking and Entering a Motor Vehicle. 

 On February 25, 2012, McClenton, the mother of his child Dawn Lee and their infant son traveled from their Jenkins Street home in North Charleston to 700 Daniel Ellis Drive (the Peninsula Condominiums) on James Island. There, Lee parked the car and waited as McClenton entered two units—one through an unsecured window and the other by prying open a patio door.

 McClenton took a purse from the first unit and jewelry, electronics, wine and clothing from the second. Additionally, McClenton took the spare car key from the second unit and entered the vehicle of the homeowner looking to pilfer more.

 Alert neighbors noticed the suspicious activity and called police who responded immediately and took up strategic positions to sight the fleeing pair.  McClenton and Lee were stopped less than a mile away and identified at the scene.

 Aside from the quick response of law enforcement, a large amount of credit is due the witnesses from the scene, according to prosecutors. “The neighbors were looking out for one another and did the exact right thing by notifying authorities,” said Timmy Finch Assistant Solicitor and one of the prosecutors on the case. “So many times people turn an eye to crime, but they acted. We couldn’t have done it without them.” Additionally, “Although no evidence could link McClenton to the inside of either unit, the circumstantial evidence was overwhelming” noted Assistant Solicitor Greg Voigt who tried the case with Finch.

 Circuit Judge Clifton Newman referenced McClenton’s criminal past and multiple pending charges in labeling him, “One of the most notorious criminals in Charleston County.” Newman sentenced McClenton to 24 years in prison on the Burglaries and five years on the BEMV charge.

Photo Credit: sergign Shutterstock