A convicted sex offender charged Wednesday with first-degree murder, kidnapping and rape in the bikini strangulation death of a Clemson University junior has confessed to the murder and two other sexual attacks in two other states, authorities said.
Jerry Buck Inman, 35, confessed to the May 26 murder of Tiffany Marie Souers, 20, as well as two sexual attacks of blond women in Tennessee and Alabama, The Anderson Independent-Mail reported Wednesday.
"We asked him, `Why?', and all he would say was that he's a sick animal," Jefferson County Sheriff Department Chief Deputy G.W. "Bud" McCoig told the newspaper. McCoig arrested Inman late Tuesday night about a mile from the home of Inman's mother.
DNA evidence linked the registered sex offender to Souers' apartment as well as to two other attacks, McCoig told the paper. Charges are expected to follow for those incidents — the May 23 aggravated rape of a Sevierville, Tenn., woman and the May 24 attempted rape and aggravated robbery May 23 of a 24-year-old Rainsville, Ala., woman.
DeKalb County Sheriff's Investigator Rhonda Jackson planned to charge Inman with attempted rape and burglary for the Rainsville, Ala. attack.
Wearing an orange jumpsuit, Inman, 35, was arraigned in Pickens County, S.C., Wednesday.
Inman waived his right to extradition after his arrest late Tuesday one mile from his mother's home in Dandridge, Tenn. Bond was set for $1 million on a fugitive from justice charge Wednesday in Jefferson County, Tenn.
Inman chose Souers at random, authorities said.
"Our knowledge is that this was a random thing," Jefferson County Sheriff David Davenport told The Greenville News. "He did not know the victim. He was just driving around."
Authorities believe Souers, a civil engineering student from Ladue, Mo., was killed around 1:30 a.m. on May 26 in her apartment at The Reserve, a sprawling complex a few minutes from the Clemson University campus. She was wearing only a bra, with a bikini top around her neck. Her wrists and ankles were bound.
Inman's criminal record stretches back to 1987, when he was convicted in Florida for sexual battery with a weapon, kidnapping, aggravated assault, armed robbery, armed burglary and grand theft auto. He was paroled from a Florida jail in September 2005.
Inman also has felony convictions in North Carolina for a sexual offense and a prison escape. He is a registered sex offender in North Carolina and Florida.
On June 2, 13th Circuit Solicitor Bob Ariail released photographs of a suspect attempting to use Souers' bank card a few hours after her death. The man wore a bandanna over his face and drove an early model SUV.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.