Ascot Estates slayings: What really happened?

Tammy Parker (Source:
Tammy Parker (Source:

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - Three days after a man and a woman were shot and killed inside a home in an upscale subdivision near Irmo, mystery still remains about what led to their deaths.

The only new information to be released since shortly after the tragic events on Friday has come not from law enforcement, but from the coroner.

Shortly after the shootings that fatally wounded 44-year-old Tammy Parker and 46-year-old Bryan Capnerhurst of Batesburg-Leesville, a spokesperson for the Richland County Sheriff's Department, told WIS that the incident stemmed from a robbery gone bad, but then retracted his statement and called the information "preliminary."

Other than saying "there's nothing new to report," and "the incident remains under investigation," sheriff's investigators remained tight-lipped over the weekend. That could be because the only person being questioned about what happened inside the red brick home at 12 Tackeria Ct. is Tammy Parker's husband.


Parker, who owned the $760,000 home with her husband, Brett, worked for Novartis Pharmaceuticals and was a singer in a local band named Jumpstart.

Brett works for a medical supply company, according to friends.

Tammy died at the scene from several gunshot wounds to the upper body, according Richland County Coroner Gary Watts. She was found in the upstairs office of the home.

Capnerhurst also died of several gunshot wounds to his upper body and was found in an upstairs storage space near the office of the home, Watts said. He died at the scene as well.

The gunshot wounds were not self-inflicted, Watts said.

The incident did not stem from a home invasion and was not drug-related, but involved an invited guest, according to the coroner.

Watts said Tammy Parker and her husband were having lunch together on April 13 when her husband invited Capnerhurst over to conduct some business for the family.

"When this incident occurred [Friday] Mr. And Mrs. Parker were at home having lunch," said Watts. "Mr. Parker invited Mr. Capnerhurst to come over in reference to some business dealings that they had. So he was an expected guest."

Sometime after Capnerhurst arrived at the home, the shootings happened. That's where the mystery begins.


Sheriff's department investigators have yet to release an official statement about who was shot first.

According to Watts, two different guns were used, but we don't know who did the firing.

What does Brett Parker know and how was he involved? Parker was at the home and dialed 911 about 12:45 p.m., shortly after the carnage.

Watts said investigators are not looking for anyone else in this incident and are focusing only on who was at the home at the time of the shooting.

The question of motive still hangs out there as well. It's unclear just what type of business the Parkers and Capnerhurst were attending to that afternoon, but many people out there have theories.

"Rumors and innuendo have been flying all over Columbia," said Watts on Saturday. "I would just ask that people do two things: wait for the facts in this case to come out. The Sheriff's Department will have more details to release in the next few days. So I ask people to just wait for the facts not to assume anything until they get the facts in this case."

Deputies said Saturday that they were still interviewing Brett Parker, but have not gone as far as saying if he is a suspect or if he will face any charges.


Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott said Monday that the deaths will be "aggressively investigated... as soon as all of the forensic evidence can be reviewed and criminal investigators determine a timeline and facts surrounding the incident," he will release the findings.

Lott added that "there is a lot of speculation in the news and community about what happened," and that he is assuring the family and community that this "will play no part in determining what happened, but the results will be based on facts."

WIS continues to follow this story and will bring you the latest as soon as we hear from law enforcement.

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