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South Carolina man charged with murder after decomposing body found in woods

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LANCASTER, S.C. — A man has been charged with murder after a badly decomposed body was found in a wooded area in Lancaster, South Carolina, Saturday.

South Carolina Murder suspect

Deputies in Lancaster responded to an area near Mullis Circle and Wade Street on Saturday afternoon after children playing in the woods found a badly decomposed body.

The victim was identified as 33-year-old Rickey W. James, according to the Lancaster Sheriff’s Office.

MORE: Complete story from our South Carolina affiliate WGHP

Investigators determined 24-year-old David Adam Pate went into the wooded area with James.

Pate then allegedly killed James and concealed his body under a pile of brush.

Friday, Pate was charged with murder.

He remains at the Lancaster County Detention Center awaiting a bond hearing.

No motive for the murder has been determined.

“Our deepest condolences go out to the family of Mr. James. We are thankful that we were able to solve this case so quickly. Our investigators did a great job putting this case together. We suspected Pate almost immediately but had to wait on lab results to prove it. We are thankful he is in jail where he belongs,” Sheriff Faile said in a news release.

By: Scott Gustin for WGHP