2 suspects arrested, 1 sought in armed robbery and murder of North Augusta cab driver


AIKEN COUNTY, S.C. (WJBF) – The Aiken County Sheriff’s Office arrested another person for the murder of a North Augusta cab driver, one suspect is still at large.

On Sunday, investigators arrested 19-year-old Rakim Alan Barton for his involvement in the death of Robert Hightower, the cab driver.

Subsequently deputies released 17-year-old Brendon Barton, who was arrested previously, because they determined he was not involved.

70-year-old Robert Hightower ran a taxi service out of a home on Georgia Ave., in North Augusta.

On March 29, 2017, he picked up 3 men from the Clearwater Village Apartment complex in Beech Island.

Investigators say Hightower dropped off the 3 suspects at the intersection of Huber Clay Rd. and Hannah Dr.

Police say that he was brutally beaten, robbed and ultimately killed.

“A lot of time it’s not as bad nowadays, because the cab drivers don’t carry as much cash as they used to, because a lot of them use cards.” Kenneth Hughes, the General Manager of Yellow Cab Augusta, told WJBF NewsChannel 6. “So it’s not as dangerous as it used to be, but you still have your instances every now and then.”

Investigators say the men refused to pay Hightower for the taxi ride.

That’s when they struck him in the head, before taking off with some of his belongings.

Hightower was rushed to the hospital, but died 2 weeks later.

“It is hard to hear it,” Hughes said.

24-year-old David Jacobs, Jr. and Barton are behind bars, but investigators have yet to track down the third suspect Marcus Turner.

Turner has 2 outstanding warrants for strong armed robbery and murder.

According to Aiken County court documents, this is not Turner’s first run in with deputies.

He’s been charged with Assault, Third Degree Battery and Refusing Arrest in the past.

The death of the cab driver has hit home for others in this field.

“It’s a real sad situation, you know the guy was just out there trying to make a living,” said Hughes.

If you know the where Turner please call the Aiken County Sheriff’s Office or CrimeStoppers of the Midlands.Count on WJBF NewsChannel 6 to bring you the latest on this developing story. 

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