ROCK HILL, SC (WBTV) - Judge Daniel Hall sentenced a Rock Hill man to 16 years in prison for the 2017 shooting death of 17-year-old Quantavious Torbit, who went by Quan.
Prosecutor Jennifer Colton told the court Thursday that Tobit was one of many teens who gathered in Sunset Park on Roddey Drive in Rock Hill on June 26, 2017. Colton said the large crowd was there to watch a fight between two girls who were disputing over posts on Facebook.
Colton says 26-year-old Demetric Houze was at the park as well, but was unrelated to any of the teens who were there for the fight.
“Mr. Houze had worked his way down from a picnic area and while observing the fight, pulled out a pistol and ultimately shot the victim, Mr. Torbit three times, causing his death,” Colton said in court.
Shantavious Torbit is Quan’s twin sister. She says her family was family friends with the Houzes, but she and her brother were not familiar with Demetric Houze.
“Who would know that he would come out of nowhere and shoot him,” Shantavious said. “My brother couldn’t even see 18 and I had to celebrate my birthday by myself and it just wasn’t the same.”
Houze never explained why he pulled out a pistol and fired it in a park full of people. Public Defender Melissa Inzerillo said his weapon was just one of many brought to the park that day.
“This case is a tragedy is that it is the result of what happens when guns are brought to a fist fight,” Inzerillo said.
“I’d like to send my condolences to the family and to my girlfriend for having to raise my kids by herself,” Houze said in court.
Houze took a plea deal that reduced the murder charge to voluntary manslaughter and possession of a weapon in commission of a violent crime. The defense and Solicitor’s office negotiated for a 16-year-sentence.
Judge Hall accepted the negotiation and sentenced Houze to 16 years in prison with 507 days of credit served.
Torbit was about to start his senior year at South Pointe High School when he was killed.