Man gets 52 years in robbery, burglary of couple

DILLON, S.C. (AP) — A judge has sentenced a man to 52 years in prison in the armed robbery and burglary of an elderly Dillon County couple.

Robert Lee Nelson was also charged with two counts of murder in the couple’s deaths, but the jury deadlocked on those charges.

Investigators say 84-year-old Walter Swaner and his 80-year-old wife, Mary, were found dead in their Hamer home in December 2009.

Prosecutors say Nelson did yard work for the couple and killed them during a robbery.

Prosecutors say they will decide whether to try Nelson again on the murder charges in a few weeks.

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