Man shot, killed by neighbor in Pickens Co., deputies say

EASLEY, SC (WSPA) – A man has died after deputies say he was shot by his neighbor in Pickens County.

Deputies have arrested 57-year-old Rebecca Barten Smoak and charged her with murder and possession of a weapon during a violent crime.

Deputies responded to a shooting on Melissa Road around 3 p.m. Saturday. When they arrived, they found a man who had been shot at least once in the torso with what appeared to be a shotgun. He was taken to Greenville Memorial Hospital where he later died.

The coroner said the victim is James Kenneth Brazeal, 58, of Easley. He died from a gunshot to his chest.

Investigators say a witness saw Smoak at the location with a gun moments before gun fire was heard by neighbors.

Brazeal told a witness that Smoak had shot him before he died, according to warrants.

Deputies say Smoak was found in her house unconscious and was taken to the hospital to be treated. She will then be taken to the Pickens County Detention Facility.

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