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Alleged Cop-Killer Dragged Into Courtroom, Tied To Chair After Disruptive Antics

Greenville, SC – Alleged cop-killer Ray Kelly refused to wear civilian clothing and had to be carried into courtroom and restrained as he repeatedly interrupted the judge and loudly objected to court proceedings on Monday.

Kelly has been charged with 10 separate counts in connection with the 2020 death of Greenville County Sheriff’s Office (GCSO) Sergeant William “Conley” Jumper, to include murder, drug trafficking, and resisting arrest, WHNS reported.

During pretrial motions on Sept. 26, officials had to hoist the uncooperative defendant into the courtroom so he could be placed into his chair, according to the news outlet.

Kelly interrupted South Carolina Circuit Court Judge Ned Miller repeatedly to let him know that he “objects” to the trial and that he “will not have business” with the public defender the court had appointed to represent him, WHNS reported.

Miller assured Kelly that having legal counsel was to his benefit.

He also warned the alleged cop-killer at one point that if he continued to be “disruptive,” he could be bound and gagged or a stun belt could be placed on him, WSPA reported.

When the trial resumed after a break on Monday afternoon, Kelly was brought into the room strapped to a chair after he allegedly refused to leave his jail cell.

He also refused to give an opening statement, WSPA reported.

Kelly, who previously told the court he wanted to represent himself, announced at the end of the day that he wanted a public defender after all.

His attorney asked the court to declare a mistrial and said she was not prepared to take part in the proceedings, but Miller refused to grant her request, WSPA reported.

During a prior court hearing in 2020, Kelly told the judge that he was “an American Nationalist” and that he was “not operating under the United States Constitution,” WYFF reported.

The circumstances leading up to Sgt. Jumper’s death began shortly before 3 p.m. on Oct. 20, the GCSO said in a press release at the time.

GCSO Master Deputy Jesse Wasserman testified on Monday that he spotted Kelly speeding down Interstate 85 while driving too close to the vehicle ahead of him, so he initiated a traffic stop, WSPA reported.

After the suspect pulled over to the side of the road, Deputy Wasserman approached his vehicle and noticed the odor of marijuana emanating from his car, according to his courtroom testimony.

Deputy Wasserman called for backup after Kelly provided him with a fake name, at which point Sgt. Jumper and another deputy responded to the scene, WSPA reported.

Dashcam and bodycam footage showed Kelly attempting to flee when Deputy Wasserman began arresting him.

The suspect allegedly jumped back into his car and pulled into traffic, dragging Sgt. Jumper along with him.

That’s when the sergeant was struck by a passing tractor-trailer, WSPA reported.

Sgt. Jumper, 52, and two of his fellow deputies all suffered injuries as a result of the incident and were rushed to a local hospital, as were two individuals from the suspect vehicle.

The sergeant “succumbed to his injuries and was ultimately pronounced deceased at the hospital,” the GCSO confirmed.

Greenville County Sheriff Hobart Lewis said that Sgt. Jumper, a 28-year veteran of the GCSO, “was a man of integrity and passion” who “embodied the true essence of a public servant.”

“The man was as dedicated to the job as they come,” Sheriff Lewis said. “His uncanny leadership will be remembered by all.”

Sgt. Jumper “was larger than life, both literally and figuratively,” the sheriff continued. “At over 6’4” he was a gentle giant who always wore a contagious smile.”

The veteran deputy was assigned to GCSO’s Interdiction team at the time of his death, and received numerous awards throughout his storied career.

“He had more certifications and instructed more classes than anyone can count, and that’s because he always strived to be the best deputy he could be,” Sheriff Lewis noted.

Sgt. Jumper was “a tireless worker and a loving friend” who “had a heart of gold,” according to the sheriff. “He will be missed dearly by everyone who had the pleasure of knowing him.”

He was promoted from the rank of master deputy to sergeant posthumously.

Sgt. Jumper leaves behind his wife, Sarah, and his daughter, Kat, Sheriff Lewis said during a press conference shortly after his death.

He is also survived by his parents, sister, in-laws, “and an entire agency who is mourning the passing of a beloved friend,” the sheriff added.

A fundraising campaign established to assist Sgt. Jumper’s family in the wake of their loss raised a total of $53,000.

Written by
Holly Matkin

Holly is a former probation and parole officer who is married to a sheriff’s deputy. She is a regular contributor to Signature Montana magazine, and has written feature articles for Distinctly Montana magazine.

View all articles
Written by Holly Matkin

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