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Kershaw man’s body found in woods behind Cassatt home
One man held on drug charges following arrest involving deceased’s car
Danny Steven Hensley Jr. -- arrested after being found in Brad Autry's car, but not implicated in Autry's death. (KCDC photo)

Acquaintances of a man who went missing on Aug. 1 found his body in a large wooded area behind a home in Cassatt on Monday evening.

During a phone interview Tuesday morning, Kershaw County Coroner David West confirmed the deceased as Brad Autry, 28, of Kershaw (Lancaster County). West said Autry’s body was located around 6:20 p.m. Monday in the woods behind a Robinson Town Road, Cassatt residence. He said an autopsy was scheduled for Wednesday.

During a separate phone interview Tuesday, Kershaw County Sheriff Lee Boan said Autry’s death is still under investigation and confirmed that two of the men with whom Autry was with Aug. 1 were arrested on drug-related and other charges the same day.

Deputies arrested Cody Boone, 24, of Lockhart Road, Kershaw, and Danny Steven Hensley Jr., 42, of Robinson Town Road, Cassatt, after being found with Autry’s burgundy Honda Civic in east Camden. However, the sheriff emphasized they are not being charged in connection with Autry’s death at this time, and may not be.

“He was hanging out with them, but there was nothing coerced about this,” Boan said, “and there were no fights that we know of, no signs of violence.”

It was unclear at press time whether it was Hensley’s property on which Autry’s body was found. Boan said Autry reportedly walked out of the home and into the woods behind the residence on Aug. 1 and never returned.

The sheriff said one of the people at the Robinson Town Road residence contacted Autry’s mother in Rock Hill following his disappearance. It was she who contacted the Kershaw County Sheriff’s Office (KCSO), he said.

Boan said that the KCSO asked the S.C. State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) to assist with an aerial search of the wooded area behind the Robinson Town Road home.

“SLED was ready to fly (Tuesday morning), but some people from the house went out and searched and found his body (Monday evening),” Boan said, adding that until the autopsy is completed, there is no apparent cause of Autry’s death. “We’re hoping toxicology will give us more answers.”

According to a KCSO report dated Aug. 1 -- the same day Autry reportedly walked into the woods and disappeared -- a KCSO deputy parked on U.S. 1 in east Camden observed a burgundy Honda Civic pass them. While the deputy got behind them to obtain license plate information, the Civic pulled into the Dollar General parking lot. Two men exited the vehicle and quickly entered the store. Information from dispatchers revealed the license plate belonged to a 1988 Chevy pickup truck, not the Civic.

When the driver -- later identified as Boone -- returned to and sat in the vehicle, deputies went over to speak to him. He claimed the Civic was not his and that it belonged to a friend. One of the deputies went inside and retrieved the passenger, later identified as Hensley.

Concerned that the car may have been stolen, the deputies handcuffed both men and searched the car. Inside, they found different motor vehicle parts lying on the back seat, all without serial numbers. They also found a glass pipe and a small digital scale.

The deputies then searched the men, finding Hensley in possession of a pill bottle containing six doses of a Schedule III controlled substance and a small baggie of methamphetamine. Boone was found to be driving under suspension.

Deputies charged Boone with a second offense of driving under suspension; he was released that same day on a $1,270 personal recognizance bond.

Hensley is still being held at the Kershaw County Detention Center on two counts of possession of a Schedule I-V controlled substance, and one count of possession of methamphetamine. He is also being held on separate safecracking and criminal conspiracy charges stemming from another case. A judge set total bond on all these charges at $20,000.

Hensley also has pending charges in other cases that include first-degree burglary and unlawful carrying of a weapon.