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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of South Carolina

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Columbia Man Sentenced to 30 Years in Connection with 2008 Torture, Robbery, and Murder in Aiken

Columbia, South Carolina---- United States Attorney Sherri A. Lydon stated that Antonio Miller, age 40, of Columbia, South Carolina, was sentenced in federal court to 360 months (30 years) imprisonment, to be followed by 5 years of supervised release. Miller plead guilty last year in connection with the torture, robbery, and murder of Fred Tucker in Aiken. Specifically, Miller plead guilty to using a firearm to commit murder in furtherance of a crime of violence and drug trafficking, kidnapping resulting in death; and conspiring to distribute crack cocaine resulting in death.  United States District Judge Mary Geiger Lewis imposed the sentence. 

Court hearings revealed that on September 15, 2008, Miller and three co-confederates targeted Fred Tucker to rob him of drugs and drug proceeds to further their ongoing efforts to distribute crack cocaine. Miller and the others drove in a rental car to Tucker’s house in Aiken. Carrying multiple firearms, these four men entered Tucker’s home, subdued and restrained Tucker, binding his hands and feet with duct tape, before repeatedly burning him with a scalding flathead screwdriver. After torturing Tucker in order to learn the location of hidden drugs and drug proceeds, Tucker was fatally shot in the chest. Through the work of local law enforcement, searches of the rental car and Miller’s own residence revealed crack cocaine taken from Tucker and firearms that ballistically matched those used to murder Tucker.

After his co-defendants pleaded guilty, a state-court jury convicted Miller of kidnapping, murder, and related charges before South Carolina Circuit Judge Doyet A. (Jack) Early, III. On appeal in 2016, the South Carolina Supreme Court reversed the conviction. As part of a longstanding history of cooperation with Second Circuit Solicitor Strom Thurmond Jr., federal authorities indicted Miller in 2017. After United States District Judge Lewis denied Miller’s attempts to suppress evidence of the murder, Miller agreed to plead guilty and be sentenced to 30 years in federal prison. 

The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Aiken County Sheriff’s Office, the Richland County Sheriff’s Department, the Aiken Department of Public Safety, the North Augusta Department of Public Safety and the United States Marshal’s Office. Assistant U.S. Attorney J.D. Rowell prosecuted the case, along with assistance from Special Assistant United States Attorney Beth Ann Young of the Second Circuit Solicitor’s Office.  

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Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses
Violent Crime
Component(s): 
Contact: 
Lance Crick (864) 282-2105
Updated October 17, 2018