SC Republican party leader and her mother arrested for battery at Conway bar Wednesday

A political director with the South Carolina Republican Party and her mother have been arrested after allegedly assaulting a person at a Conway bar, according to a police report.

Braylee Estep, 22, who is the political director for the South Carolina Republican Party, and Michele Stalvey Estep, 53, both of Conway, were charged with third-degree assault and battery by a mob on Jan. 3 and Jan. 2 respectively.

It appears that that a third person was involved in the alleged assault, but that information was not immediately available.

A message left Wednesday with the South Carolina Republican Party was not immediately returned.

Conway Police responded to Stalvey’s Watering Hole in Conway, owned by the Estep family, about 11 p.m. Dec. 23 to a report of vandalism, according to a police report. When officers arrived, the victim and a witness told police that while drinking at the bar the third suspect’s boyfriend began to make them feel uncomfortable by hanging his arms over their shoulders. The suspect began to shake her head and call the victim and witness vulgar names.

The victim and witness then decided to leave and the “bickering” continued between the two parties in the parking lot.

Michele Estep allegedly heard the victim say something negative about her daughter, the report said. Braylee Estep then began to bang on the window of the vehicle, where the victim and witness were inside. Michele Estep and the third suspect came out of the bar after hearing the commotion and also came to the vehicle, the report said.

At some point one of the suspects grabbed a Stanley cup from the vehicle’s cup holder and began to bang it on the vehicle, placing dents into the vehicle, the report said. The victims were able to put the vehicle in reverse and leave, and then call police.

An arrest warrant said that Braylee Estep and Michele Estep did strike the victim several times with their hands, causing injury.

The Republican Party’s website has Braylee Estep listed as its political director.

Her bio lists her as starting as an intern in 2018 with the state GOP’s Victory Program in Myrtle Beach. Since then she has worked on multiple campaigns statewide.

In the 2022 election cycle, Estep was the regional field director in Georgia for the Governor Brain Kemp and Herschel Walker race. In 2023, she moved back to South Carolina and worked within the 7th Congressional District on the reorganization process.

Her family owns the business Stalvey’s Bait and Tackle in Conway, according to Estep’s bio. It appears that the Stalvey’s Watering Hole is attached to the business.

Both women were booked into the J. Reuben Long Detention Center Jan. 3 and each released on a $5,000 bond.