Saluda man sentenced to 34 years in prison after murder conviction

Published: Sep. 18, 2023 at 5:34 PM EDT
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SALUDA, S.C. (WIS) - A 20-year-old man was sentenced to 34 years in state prison after a jury found him guilty of murdering 29-year-old Xavier Cancer.

Aaron Sincere Hood was convicted of murdering Cancer on March 16, 2021, on Keisha Avenue in Saluda after a fight.

Before the murder, Hood and another person went back and forth on social media arguing. The man agreed to fight Hood if “guns were not involved,” according to a news release from the 11th solicitor’s office.

Xavier Cancer, 29, was killed March 2021.
Xavier Cancer, 29, was killed March 2021.(11th Solicitor's Office.)

The state said Hood arrived at the man’s house armed and threatened to shoot him and his friends. At this time, Cancer arrived at the man’s house and agreed to fight Hood if Hood put down his gun.

About 10 seconds into the fight, Hood’s friend, who was helping him with the fight, passed him a gun. Hood used the gun to shoot Cancer. The other man involved in the fight was “pistol-whipped” in the head, the solicitor’s office said.

South Carolina Law Enforcement found trace gunshot residue on Hood’s clothing and Hood’s hands which linked him to the crime, the state said.

The jury found Hood shot Cancer in the chest standing only a few feet away from him. According to the state solicitor’s office, a forensic pathologist who testified during the trial said Cancer was shot while crouching down to try and avoid the gunfire.

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