Suspect who killed son, shot ex-wife found dead in SC motel

Suspect who killed son, shot ex-wife found dead in SC motel

COLUMBIA, SC (WWBT) - "I'm just sad because my brother didn't get justice for what happened to him."

Those were the words of 18-year-old Debonet Valentine as she reacted to the news of her father Earl Valentine ending his own life after police said he shot his ex-wife and fatally wounded his 15-year-old son.

Norlina Police Chief Taylor Bartholomew said Earl Valentine was found dead at a motel in Columbia, South Carolina earlier Wednesday evening.

Chief Bartholomew said Valentine's cell phone was pinging in the Richmond area all morning. The chief of police said law enforcement surrounded him at a motel in South Carolina where he shot himself. Valentine was pronounced dead by officials.

No one else was injured in the shooting.

Bartholomew believes Earl Valentine went to his ex-wife's house with the intent to kill her early Tuesday. Bartholomew believes that is when their 15-year-old son stepped in and was shot. He was killed while his mother survived.

Keisha Valentine was scheduled for her third surgery on Wednesday, but the police chief she is not out of the woods yet.

Debonet said she and the doctors treating her mother told her the tragic news of her son's death when they took her breathing tubes out.

"She blamed herself… And she said she wished it was her, instead of my brother," Debonet shared.

Valentine posted a video on Facebook after the shooting, confessing to the shooting. He said in the video, "I loved my wife, but she deserved what she had coming. I know a lot of ya'll are going to be disappointed in me, but it was something that had to be done."

He went on to say he had been "very sick for months" and that "it was something (he) could not help."

Valentine then stated, "I don't know if I'm going to make it where I'm going. But if I don't, I wish all of you a good life."

He ended by saying he had no remorse.

Debonet said she knew of her father's threats toward her mother.

"He messaged my mom on Facebook and said he would kill her and then kill himself," Debonet said. "I just didn't know when and where."

She went on to say that family members left their homes and stayed in hotels because they were afraid Valentine would target them next, with Debonet saying "he called them afterwards and said he would come and kill them."

Family has also set up a GoFundMe account to pay for the 15-year-old's funeral, a life taken far too soon by a senseless act of violence.

"Everybody knew him at school, everybody loved Earl (Earl the third, her brother)," she recalled.

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