SOUTH CAROLINA – Tow-truck driver gets 26 years in death over parking boot
The Post and Courier: Tow-truck driver gets 26 years in death over parking boot
(HOA doesn’t allow parking on street)
By Dave Mundy
June 19, 2014
A Beaufort County tow truck driver who shot a man dead during an argument over a parking boot almost four years ago was sentenced to 26 years in prison for voluntary manslaughter Thursday. Preston Oates, 30, had been charged with murder in the shooting of 34-year-old Carlos Olivera of Bluffton on Christmas Eve in 2010. A jury deliberated less than three hours before finding Oates guilty of the lesser charge. Judge Brooks Goldsmith also sentenced Oates to five years for possession of a weapon in the commission of a violent crime. The sentences will be served concurrently, and Oates will receive credit for time served since the shooting.
He must serve at least 85 percent of his sentence before being eligible for release. Olivera’s family gasped when the jury found Oates not guilty of murder, according to The Island Packet newspaper. Goldsmith told the jury before deliberations, over objections from the defense, that they could choose to find Oates guilty of the lesser manslaughter charge, according to the newspaper. Read more: