UNION — A Union man was out on three bonds when he was arrested Wednesday morning and charged with kidnapping and beating his grandmother in her home
Christopher Austin, 28, 250 Old English Road, Union, was originally arrested and charged early Wednesday morning by the Union County Sheriff’s Office with assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature. On Thursday, Sheriff David Taylor announced that, upon further investigation, his office was also charging Austin with kidnapping and possession crack cocaine.
In announcing the additional charges, Taylor said that a deputy was dispatched to Austin’s residence early Wednesday morning after an anonymous call came in to Union County 911 requesting a welfare check. Taylor said Friday that the caller did so anonymously because they feared retaliation from Austin if he wasn’t taken into custody that night. He said the caller was afraid Austin might leave the house before law enforcement arrived.
When the deputy arrived, Taylor said Austin at first refused to allow him inside to conduct the welfare check. He said that when Austin then opened the door the deputy found the 67-year-old victim lying in her bed having been severely beaten.
Taylor said the deputy immediately called for EMS to be dispatched the scene. He said the deputy also placed Austin under arrest because, first, he had injuries to his hand and, second, the victim was able to tell the deputy that Austin had beaten her several times since noon Tuesday.
In addition, Taylor said that at the time of his arrest, Austin had crack cocaine in his possession.
Taylor said that the victim was transported to Union Medical Center where it was determined she had bleeding on the brain and was subsequently transported to Spartanburg Regional Medical Center. He said that as of late Wednesday afternoon she was considered to be in stable condition.
On Friday, Taylor said that he had no additional information on the victim’s condition other than that she had been moved to a regular hospital room. Taylor said that investigators had been able to interview the victim and get a statement from her Thursday. He said that previously she’d been too sedated to be interviewed.
In the course of their investigation of the incident, Taylor said investigators determined that Austin had barricaded the doors of the house and destroyed the telephones in the building to prevent his grandmother from calling the police. Taylor said Friday that the house belonged to the victim.
Taylor said Thursday that at the time of his arrest, Austin, who he said has a criminal record that dates back to when he was 17, was out of jail out on bond for three previous charges. On Friday, Taylor said that Austin was out on a $50,000 bond and that those three charges included kidnapping and domestic violence which stemmed from an incident involving his girlfriend. He said the third charge was for violation of probation which stemmed from his being on probation for an earlier conviction.
“So he was out on three bonds when he was arrested this time,” Taylor said Friday. “He was already on probation before that incident involving his girlfriend and so he was served with a violation of probation warrant. His bond was set at $50,000 at that time, but when somebody is on probation and they violate it that tells me they are not doing what they were asked to do so why are they out on the street?”
While he was out on bond at the time of his arrest Wednesday, Taylor said that Austin was denied bond and is currently being held in the Union County Jail.
This story courtesy of the Union County Sheriff’s Office.