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Co-defendant tells of plan to rob a man, who was beaten, handcuffed and burned alive

(Janet Blackmon Morgan / The Sun News)

“He had a lot of money so we was gonna rob him,” said one of three men accused of robbing, beating and burning Charles Bryant “CB” Smith alive in what prosecutors described as an end to a reign of terror.

Twenty-five-year-old Douglas Thomas of Shallotte, North Carolina, took the stand Tuesday to testify against his alleged partner in crime, 24-year-old Tommy Lee Benton.

Both men face charges of murder and arson, but prosecutors say the reign of terror that consumed the last 11 days of Smith’s life started with Benton and another man robbing him at gunpoint on the morning of April 18, 2014.

Read more on this story from our Grand Strand News Alliance partner, The Sun News, here.

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