State seeks death penalty in double murder

A man charged with murdering a 9 year-old girl and her grandmother will face the death penalty for his alleged crimes.

Cephas Cowick

Cephas Cowick, 24, is charged with the murders of Denise Couplin, 52, and her granddaughter Deziyah Chatman. In July of 2016, Couplin and Davis were found shot to death at their home on Bobo Newsome Highway in Darlington.

State prosecutors notified Cowick in early June of their intent to seek the death penalty in his case.

According to court documents, the prosecutors’ decision is motivated by the following aggravating circumstances: the victim of the murder was under 11 years of age; the murder was committed with the purpose of receiving money or something of monetary value; the case involves multiple murder victims.

Cowick’s wife, Katherine Baucom, faces two counts of murder and will be tried separately. Both have also been charged with third-degree arson, criminal conspiracy, armed robbery with a deadly weapon, first-degree burglary, grand larceny less than $10,000, and possession of a weapon during a violent crime.

Katherine Baucom

Prosecutors allege that Cowick and Baucom acted together to rob Couplin and ended up killing her and Chatman in a bedroom of their home. It is also alleged that the couple stole Couplin’s vehicle and burned it at a later time in an attempt to destroy evidence of their crimes. The burned car was found on Birdsnest Road in Hartsville.

Cowick and Baucom are currently being held without bond in the W. Glenn Campbell Detention Center.

Author: Duane Childers

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