Man sentenced to life in prison for 2019 murder of Mauldin teen
In 2019, Walmart surveillance observed the suspect covered in blood
GREENVILLE, S.C. (FOX Carolina) - The Thirteenth Circuit Solicitor said a 22-year-old man who was charged with the murder of a Mauldin teen in 2019 was sentenced to life in prison three years later.
On January 29, 2019, deputies said 16-year-old Joshua Meeks, a Mauldin High School student, disappeared after he told his mother he was going to hang out with friends at a cookout on Woodruff Road.
Greenville County deputies found Meeks’ car that following Wednesday outside the Rocky Creek apartments on Woodruff Road, but he was not inside. Deputies also found a lot of blood in the car.
They later found his body at Deer Wood Circle in Laurens County on Thursday, January 31, 2019.
Deputies said Sosa Croft, who was 18, and an unnamed 16-year-old met up with Meeks for a drug deal and tried to carjack Meeks, leading to a shooting.
Croft was later arrested and charged with murder, grand larceny, possession of a weapon during a violent crime and armed robbery.
Later, two more teens were also charged in the deadly shooting. The unnamed 16-year-old was charged with murder and 18-year-old Lyric Lawson was charged with accessory after the fact. Lawson was later released from jail.
When Croft appeared before the judge he apologized to the family saying he vowed to find the real killer. He was denied bond.
“To the victim’s family I understand that nothing I say can ever bring Joshua back but I’m going to let you know this now: I’m working with my lawyer and I’m real-life telling who the killer is, who the person the monster is who took your son away from you, the person who pulled the trigger that night. The person who took Josh away….”
Croft also said he and Meeks never had any problems and he wouldn’t personally do this to him. He said he would work with law enforcement and tell the truth about his involvement so the “real killer” could be arrested and Meek’s family could get justice.
Croft first re-appeared in court on Monday, December 5, 2022.
The court resumed on Tuesday, December 6, 2022 where Cruz Miguel, who was 16 at the time of the murder, took the stand. Miguel claimed that Sosa was acting aggressively before entering the car and shooting Meeks. He also said he didn’t tell authorities until after Croft was in custody for fear of what Croft would do.
Officials said Walmart surveillance observed Croft covered in blood purchasing cleaning products. These are the same products investigators found in the vehicle--which was found at an apartment complex where Croft lived--where the murder took place.
During court, a testimony also revealed that Croft shot Meeks because he thought the teen had money, but only found $10 and a pack of skittles.
Croft, now 22, was convicted on December 8, 2022 of murder, armed robbery and possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime and sentenced to the maximum sentence of life in prison.
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