A man choked an elderly woman to death after raping her in Liberty, South Carolina, on Sunday (April 12).

According to local reports, the victim, identified as 89-year-old Margaret Alice Karr, was found dead at her home on Mills Avenue around 2.15 p.m. on Sunday. Following an investigation, 21-year-old Thomas James Chapman was taken into custody the following day.

According to the arrest warrant, the accused broke into the victim’s home through a back window. He then raped the elderly woman in her bedroom before choking her till she lost consciousness. He then slit the victim’s throat with a knife and fled the scene with money he stole from the residence.

The accused appeared in court Tuesday morning and cried profusely as he signed court papers. He was charged with murder and six other crimes including burglary, criminal sexual conduct, assault and battery, weapon possession and petit larceny.

Meanwhile, speaking in the court, the victim’s unidentified family member said, “Our hope, our expectation is justice will be served on behalf of Alice Karr. And when justice is served the focus turns to Alice's life and not to her death." The case was ongoing.

The incident comes a month after a man in Memphis, Tennessee, attacked and raped an elderly neighbor at her home. Local reports stated the victim, who was in her 70s, and the accused, identified as Justin Arnold, were at her home when he attempted to get her to drink some wine. When the victim refused, the accused attacked her. He hit the woman in the face, resulting in her sustaining bruises in her left eye. The man then went on to rape her on knife point before fleeing the scene.

Arnold was taken into custody the following day and charged with rape and other crimes including aggravated abuse of elderly or vulnerable adult and evading arrest. Police said the man was not the victim’s caregiver. The identity of the victim was not released.

Representational image of a handcuff. Pixabay