Wife arrested for husband's murder, 5 years later

Keri Pope

It took five and a half years, but Tuesday police arrested a Georgetown County woman and charged with her husband's murder, as well as conspiring to do it.

Initially, the woman told police two men had broken into their Georgetown home and shot her husband, who was a Georgetown County Detention Officer.

Police told NewsChannel 15 Tuesday, that they never really bought the story of the unknown assailants and considered 23-year old Keri Pope a suspect from day one.

So, what took them so long to arrest her?

Investigators said it was a tedious process of interviewing lots of witnesses, some they had to track down in prison.

There was some forensic evidence that took a long time to be analyzed, and they never found a murder weapon.

It was May 27, 2003 just before midnight, when police were called to the couple's home on Highmarket Street in Georgetown.

There, they found 21-year old Joseph Pope dead.

Keri told police that two men had chained her while she slept and then shot Joseph and their pitbull.

A 2-year-old was unharmed.

Keri's charged with murder and conspiracy to commit murder. That means, police said, she acted with at least one other person.

And so, this investigation is not over.

Late Tuesday afternoon, police were interviewing someone, and they expect more arrests.

We asked police if they believed Keri pulled the trigger. They wouldn't say.

But in South Carolina, the hand of one is the hand of all, meaning you can be charged with murder even if you don't pull the trigger.

Since Pope's husband worked at the Georgetown County Detention Center, she is being held in Horry County at the J Reuben Long Detention Center.