Joshua Esskew, gay victim of 2011 Rock Hill mob attack, arrested on drug charge

jmcfadden@heraldonline.comJanuary 2, 2014 

— The Rock Hill man who made national headlines when he fell victim to a 2011 mob attack was arrested again this week after he was found with pot in a motel parking lot and uttered several racial and sexual slurs toward the officer who arrested him, police say.

Joshua Kelly Esskew, 22, is now charged with possession of marijuana and open container after police found him smoking pot in a Pontiac outside the Executive Inn on North Anderson Road, according to a Rock Hill police report. Esskew was in the front passenger’s seat and a woman, Tiffany Jones, 31, was in the back.

Police ordered Esskew to get out of the car, the report states. Esskew became “verbal” towards officers, using “racial and sexual slurs.” Those slurs were not specified in the report. Officers found an open liquor bottle on the right rear passenger floor board, the report states, and saw Jones drink from a convenience store coffee cup.

They smelled alcohol and asked Jones what was inside her coffee cup, the report states. She told them liquor. Police arrested Jones, charging her with possession of marijuana after finding a marijuana cigarette in her purse. Police also found less than 1 gram of “loose marijuana” on top of the center console within arm’s reach of where Esskew had been sitting.

On the way to jail, Esskew continued to yell, the report states, and used more racial and sexual slurs against officers. Esskew was charged with possession of marijuana. Both have since been released from jail on bond.

Last month, Esskew was charged with third-degree assault and battery after his roommate reported that he punched her when she chastised him for drinking and driving. Esskew refuted those claims to The Herald, saying he was drinking a soda and his roommate cut herself with the soda can. That case is still pending, court records show.

On April 9, 2011, five men beat Esskew outside the Spot Convenience Store on Cherry Road. He was glassed in the face, kicked and punched several times before he fell unconscious --all because, he claimed, he “walked gay.” Charges against two of the accused attackers were dismissed, but the three others have been sentenced for their crimes.

Since the mob assault, Esskew had been charged with stealing a credit card from a worker at a church in downtown Rock Hill and making several fraudulent charges. He pleaded guilty and was placed on probation, which was revoked when he failed to report several times. Two months later, he was charged with stealing painkillers from a CVS pharmacy. He pleaded guilty last October, but was sentenced to time served.

The Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service