Fifth Judicial Circuit Solicitor's Office Fifth Judicial Circuit Solicitor's Office Press Releases

Press Releases

Columbia Man Pleads Guilty to the Murder of Forest Acres Police Officer

Tuesday, May 09, 2017


– Today in Richland County, Jarvis Hall pleaded guilty to the Murder of Forest Acres Police Officer Greg Alia, as well as Possession of a Weapon During a Violent Crime, Receiving Stolen Goods, Possession of a Stolen Pistol, Possession of a Stolen Motor Vehicle, Resisting Arrest and Removing a License Plate, which he committed in Richland County. He also pleaded guilty to Armed Robbery and Attempted Armed Robbery, which he committed in Lexington County.  Judge Steven H. John sentenced Hall to life without parole.

Forest Acres Police Department (FAPD) Chief Gene Sealy requested that the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) investigate the September 30, 2015, murder of FAPD Officer Greg Alia that occurred at Richland Fashion Mall (3400 Forest Drive) in Columbia, South Carolina.  According to Chief Sealy, Officers Greg Alia, Curtis Singleton and others, responded to a suspicious person call and encountered a subject later identified as Jarvis Hall.  As FAPD Officers were walking toward Richland Fashion Mall from the Bank of America parking lot, they encountered Jarvis Hall sitting on a bench near the mall entrance closest to Barnes & Noble bookstore.  They explained to Hall that they were there in reference to a suspicious person call and then asked Hall for his identification.   Although Hall first appeared to be reaching for his identification, he instead ran inside of the mall.  Officers pursued Hall into the mall, with Officer Alia yelling for Hall to ‘stop’ as Hall pushed open a set of double doors to a rear hallway within the mall.   Officer Singleton pushed through the doors and saw Officer Alia physically engaged with Hall as both men fell to the floor.  Hall then pulled a gun and shot Officer Alia in the back of the head.  After seeing Hall shoot Officer Alia, Officer Singleton dove on Hall in an attempt to restrain and disarm him.  Although Hall continued to resist arrest, Office Singleton was finally able to tase and handcuff Hall. 

Richland County EMS responded to the scene and attended to Officer Alia, reporting that Officer Alia was killed at the scene.  The autopsy report indicated that the cause of death was a gunshot wound to the head.  
Jarvis Hall was transported by Richland County EMS to Palmetto Health Richland Hospital for an examination.  He was discharged and subsequently transported to SLED where he was interviewed by Lt. Freddie Pough.  Jarvis Hall has remained in jail since his arrest on September 30, 2015.

From October 2015 until today’s hearing, Solicitor Johnson and members of the Fifth Circuit Solicitor’s Office had various meetings with Officer Alia’s widow and his parents regarding this case.  Additionally, they met with Chief Sealy and the Forest Acres Police Department.  “These cases are very difficult cases for all persons involved,” said Johnson.  “As a former law enforcement officer, I certainly understand what people may say concerning the death penalty.  But, I also know that it’s important for us to examine the facts, the statutory factors, and to consider input from the victim’s family,” added Johnson.  “And, in this case, at the end of the day, thirty-six year old Jarvis Hall will spend the rest of his life in prison with no possibility of parole.  Further, Hall waived all rights to appeal, so the Alia family can truly close the legal chapter of this tragic event. Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with the Alia family, the Forest Acres Police Department and the community during this time,” concluded Johnson.