Man charged in shooting death of Aiken teenager


AIKEN, S.C. (WJBF) – A suspect is in custody in connection with the shooting death of an Aiken teen.

Aiken County Public Safety investigators arrested and charged 21-year-old Reggie Tyrell Jones in the shooting death of 18-year-old Joseph Copeland.

The shooting occurred April 25, 2021 on the 500 block of Barnwell Avenue near Kershaw Street at Stoney-Gallman Homes. Jones was located Monday, May 3, 2021 and was arrested without incident.

An incident report revealed dozens of bullet casings were found near the scene. His family said they found out about the incident over social media.

“You took a good one. You took a good one. You just don’t know but you did,” Joseph Copeland’s mother Aretha Copeland told NewsChannel 6’s Aiken Bureau Chief Shawn Cabbagestalk about the incident.

An Aiken family is reflecting on good times and searching for answers following the death of their beloved son and brother Joseph. “He did not deserve this. He did not deserve this!” Aretha added.

The Copeland’s said that Joseph was always looking out for others even putting them before himself. “He always protects his family. No matter what the situation may be,” sister Amanda Copeland said.

Investigators say the 18-year-old was sitting in a vehicle when someone started shooting into the car, hitting him. One of his sisters said that she found about the incident not from authorities but a call over snap chat.

“I didn’t think anything of it or whatever. And then they continued to call. So I picked up and someone told me, you know, my brother got shot,” Tamara Copeland recalled.

His aspirations to become a soldier of helping people now cut short after Sunday.

“He always talked about going in the military. He always talked about when he grow up, he’s going to have this. He’s going to have that. He’s going to help people,” Aretha said.

The incident not bringing the Copeland’s together. “Because we were already a close-knit family.”

But causing them to lean on a higher power. Now, closure is what the family wants and they are holding on deep to their faith.

Meanwhile, Jones was previously charged with trespassing after shots were fired at South Aiken High School in September 2019.

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