Black and blue all over, boater wants answers after Lake Murray attack

LAKE MURRAY, SC (WIS) - 55-year-old David Branham's left eye, his legs, and his back show vivid reminders of a brutal attack.

Branham's face is so marred, he says his daughter can't help but cry when she looks him in the eyes.

"The lake's a fun time for my family," he said. "This is the first time I've ever had anything like this happen."

Sunday night, around 9 p.m., deputies say Branham and his wife were trailering their pontoon boat at Jakes Landing, a popular Lake Murray marina, when four or five men approached Branham after he asked them to turn off some headlights obscuring his vision while trailering.

"Well, the next thing I know they're around my truck. I had my window down talking to one of them, and I guess he was the distraction for the other one. One of them just reached in there and punched me in the face," Branham said. "The last thing I remember was me waking up on the boat ramp with my wife screaming – running towards me – with my shirt torn off of me."

Braham's left eye is black and blue, his jaw is damaged, his left inner thigh is bruised a lurid purple, and his knees and back are skinned.

"I fell way fortunate. They could have killed me. You can't hit folks in the head like that," he said.

Branham feels the attack was fueled by alcohol and drugs. However, he and deputies are still clueless about who's responsible. However, he believes they were driving a newer model Chevrolet truck with a white Bentley pontoon boat.

As Branham offers a $500 reward for anyone who comes forward with important info, deputies are also encouraging anyone who knows anything to call CrimeStoppers at 1-888-CRIME-SC.

Deputies also wish to speak with the two good Samaritans who stopped to help Branham after he was beaten.

"Unfortunately, there's just not a whole lot that we have that's helpful to us at this point," said Capt. Adam Myrick with the Lexington County Sheriff's Department.

While Myrick doesn't believe there's an overwhelming reason for members of the public to fear – or to avoid Jakes Landing – he urges them to use caution there or anywhere.

Copyright 2018 WIS. All rights reserved.