Hammer Wielding Ex-boyfriend Convicted of Home Invasion

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August 18, 2023

William Rivers, Jr., 50, of Columbia, was convicted of Burglary 1st Degree and Assault and Battery 1st Degree by a Richland County jury on Wednesday, August 16, 2023 for a violent home invasion that occurred in November of 2019 in a gated Windermere subdivision in Blythewood.  The Honorable Robert Hood presided over the trial and sentenced Rivers, who had been twice previously convicted for Domestic Violence, to twenty-five (25) years in prison.

On November 7, 2019, shortly after returning to her home from dinner, the female victim and her friend were startled by what sounded like an explosion in the garage, followed by the sound of someone hammering and kicking the door that led into the home.  The victim immediately called 911 and soon thereafter, another crash was heard at her backdoor.  Mr. Rivers, who the victim had previously ended a two year relationship with, had smashed through a glass door while armed with two hammers and entered the home.  He then chased the female victim through the first floor and up the stairs to the second floor. The victim’s friend was able to temporarily subdue Mr. Rivers while the female victim ran first to her bedroom and then to her bathroom where she locked the door.  Mr. Rivers was able to free himself and smash through first the bedroom door with his hammers, and then the bathroom door as well.  As he encountered the victim, hiding in her closet, he raised the hammer over her in a threatening manner.  The victim’s friend was finally able to subdue Mr. Rivers once and for all before he was able to inflict serious injury upon the victim.  Upon arrival, the Richland County Sheriff’s Department arrested Mr. Rivers and conducted further investigation.

The Fifth Circuit Solicitor’s Office, represented by First Assistant Solicitor Dale Scott and Assistant Solicitor Michael Bradbury prosecuted the case.

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