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Grovetown Man is Found Dead in Cell at Columbia County Jail


A Columbia County jailer found a 31-year-old Grovetown man dead in his cell overnight, just hours after he was brought in for failing to appear, authorities said.

Broderick Anthony Lovette was processed Tuesday night into the Columbia County Detention Center for his failure to appear on previous charges of aggravated assault and possession of Schedule II drugs, sheriff’s Maj. Steve Morris said. Around midnight Wednesday, a deputy found Lovette unresponsive and CPR was administered until EMS arrived. EMS was unable to revive him.

Coroner Vernon Collins responded and an autopsy has been scheduled, including testing for toxicology to see if he had ingested anything before being booked. Lovette had not even been in jail long enough to have a new mugshot taken, and his cellmate didn’t hear anything while sleeping, Maj. Morris said.

Records show Lovette was arrested in May 2021 for an aggravated assault. In that case, Lovette allegedly choked his girlfriend while they were staying inside the Days Inn & Suites in Grovetown. The victim said Lovette had been upset after going through her cellphone.

“They had been arguing and he had hit her multiple times over the past few hours,” a sheriff’s report says. “Right before I knocked on the door, Broderick pinned her on top of the bed and began choking her. When Broderick heard the knock on the door, he jumped off of her and ran to the door.”

The victim was found to be out of breath and coughing. She had a distinct red hand print across the front of her neck.

In Columbia County, Lovette had a criminal convictions for simple battery and hindering officers in 2009 and pending 2021 charges for cocaine and meth possession as well as the aggravated assault and drug offense. In Richmond County, he had previous charges of DUI and obstruction.

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Greg Rickabaugh
Greg Rickabaugh
Greg Rickabaugh is an award-winning crime reporter in the Augusta-Aiken area with experience writing for The Augusta Chronicle, The Augusta Press and serving as publisher of The Jail Report. Rickabaugh is a 1994 graduate of the University of South Carolina and has appeared on several crime documentaries on the Investigation Discovery channel.
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