Shooting death

The two Myrtle Beach police officers involved in a deadly shooting over the weekend have been placed on paid administrative leave.

The State Law Enforcement Division is investigating the shooting, which police said happened early Saturday just after 2 a.m. near 65th Avenue North and Wedgewood Drive.

Matthew Graham, 32, of Loris died from injuries he sustained in the incident, according to the Horry County Coroner's Office.

The two Myrtle Beach officers involved were not injured, Myrtle Beach Police Department Cpl. Tom Vest said. Their names have not been released.

Vest said the department is following its procedure regarding the use of lethal force. The rules state the officers are required to undergo a debriefing with a mental health counselor or psychologist. Their leave is considered non-disciplinary; the officers still receive pay and benefits.

"Per established protocol, SLED will be conducting an independent investigation, while MBPD will be reviewing the incident internally," an MBPD news release stated. "We ask for patience while every lead is investigated." The MBPD is also conducting an internal investigation.

Around 1:20 a.m. Saturday, police responded to the 6600 block of Lagoon Place in response to a report of a stolen bicycle, according to a police report. The victim said a white bicycle valued at roughly $600 had been stolen from his garage while no was home.

A neighbor told police an unknown white man was seen climbing over a fence using a ladder that was stored inside an unlocked shed around midnight. Officers established a perimeter surrounding the suspect while he was in a wooded area at 65th Avenue North and Wildwood Trail, according to the police report.

Around 2 a.m., police saw Graham riding a bicycle that matched the description of the stolen one. He was heading toward 65th Avenue North, the police report stated.

The reporting officer noted the suspect was seen holding a rifle in the area of 65th Avenue North and Wedgewood Street, which is where the police-involved shooting happened. Authorities confirmed the bicycle at the scene was the same one that had been reported stolen.

SLED spokesman Tommy Crosby confirmed the state agency is investigating the case, but he referred all questions about the officers to city police.

"No additional information is available at this time as it is an active law enforcement proceeding," he said via email.

Anyone with information about this case is asked to contact SLED at (803) 737-9000 or the Myrtle Beach Police Department at (843) 918-1382.

Shooting suspect charged

Conway Police arrested Eric Lamont Deery Jr., 17, Friday in relation to a shooting on that occurred in the area of Beaty Street and Racepath Avenue on Sept. 26.

Deery is charged with attempted murder, possession of a weapon during a violent crime and possession of a weapon by certain persons, and was denied bond in Conway’s Municipal Court.

On Sept. 26, police found a man at 505 Beaty Street near Racepath Avenue with several gunshot wounds.

An arrest warrant says the victim suffered life-threatening wounds. He was hit four times and needed surgery.

The possession of a weapon by certain persons unlawful resulted from a law that makes it illegal for anyone under 18-years-old to possess a gun.

Deery’s warrant was signed Sept. 26 and he won’t turn 18 until Oct. 22.

Drive-by shooting

A drive-by shooting into a Loris area home this past week resulted in injuries to a 5-year-old boy.

According to the Horry County Police Department, the shooting happened a few minutes before midnight Thursday at a home in the 2300 block of Highway 746.

The incident report states a woman who lives at the home where the shooting took place told police she was awakened by the sound of gunfire.

She said when she ran to make sure everyone was okay, she saw the child in the living room had been shot in the leg.

The woman said she did not see who fired the shots. She only heard the gunfire, the report states.

The next portion of the incident report was redacted.

The report says there were “multiple” bullet holes across the front of the mobile home. There were also bullet holes inside the home on a refrigerator, stove and furniture, the report continues.

The child was taken to a local hospital for treatment. The boy’s injuries were not considered life-threatening.

Detectives with HCPD are continuing to investigate.

Road rage

A young Galivants Ferry woman told police that as she left the Conway Walmart recently, someone in a white Nissan followed her on U.S. 501 down Enoch Road where he shot at her near the church, according to the Horry County police report.

She stopped at Midland Grocery on S. Nichols Highway where she called 911.

The woman told police that she didn’t know the man and woman in the car. The policeman checked the car and didn’t find anything that looked like a bullet might have struck it. The policeman left Midland Grocery and went to Dixon Road trying to find the car, but didn’t see it.

Grazed on the chin

A Longs woman said she took her boyfriend to a location on Old Chesterfield Rod to retrieve his cell phone that he had left there the night before, according to a Conway police report.

When the Longs man walked up to a shed where the suspect had been staying the suspect came out and started shooting a handgun at the Longs man, the police report said. The girlfriend said the suspect then started chasing the man around the yard while shooting. When the Longs man was hit in the face he ran back to the vehicle and his girlfriend took him to the Seacoast Emergency Room.

The Horry County policeman says he spoke with the Longs man while he was being treated for the graze on his chin.

The injured man told the policeman that he and the suspect had gotten into an argument the night before and had gone to the residence to get his cell phone.

He said when he went to the shed the man came out shooting. He ran and his girlfriend took him to the hospital. Police went to the shed and found the door open, but the suspect wasn’t there.

However, he came out while they were there and was charged with third-degree assault and battery, attempted murder, felon in possession of a weapon and possession of a weapon during a violence crime.

A fight at Wendy’s on S.C. 90

Horry County police were called to the Longs section to a fight at Wendy’s on S.C. 90, according to an Horry County police report.

The young Longs girl told police that her ex-boyfriend had been constantly texting and calling her before he came there, punched and scratched her

She says she fought back before retreating to her car. At one point she said the suspect pulled a gun and pointed it at her and her sister while threatening to kill her.

She says he fled in a small white car with a paper tag. Police put out a request for other law enforcement to be on the lookout for the vehicle.

The young man was charged with failure to appear.

Drug/alcohol incidents

■ A Conway man who was driving his girlfriend’s car at Country Club Drive and Long Avenue at about 7:30 p.m. on a recent evening was found lying in the grass after the vehicle turned over, according to a Conway police report.

A policeman said the man was able to tell him his name before he fell back into unconsciousness. A passenger in the car told police that the vehicle was hers, and she didn’t want a police report because she didn’t have insurance on the vehicle.

According to the police report, the girl said her Conway boyfriend had been drinking fireball before driving the truck. She said the two were arguing when he lost control and the vehicle turned over on the shoulder of the road.

The policeman said when he got close to the man he smelled alcohol and saw one open bottle and one unopened bottle of fireball inside the vehicle, but couldn’t get it because of the damage to the truck.

At the hospital, a policeman learned that due to respiratory issues the driver was going to be put to sleep until at least the next day.

The doctor told the policeman that he would be unable to see or talk with the driver because they were taking him to intensive care.

The policeman then charged the driver with driving under the influence and driving under suspension, second offense.

■ A North Myrtle Beach man was cited for public drunkenness and open container after a Conway policeman was called to Bank of America on Main Street in Conway at about midday Monday, according to a Conway police report.

The policeman says the man smelled of alcohol and had a bottle of what the policeman thought was alcohol in his vehicle.

The vehicle was towed and the man was taken to jail.

■ A Conway policeman responded to the area of Seventh Avenue and Smith Street to check on a report of a man passed out on the side of the road, according to a Conway police report.

The policeman says he checked to make sure the Myrtle Beach man was breathing before he talked to him and awakened him. The report says the man smelled of alcohol and he admitted to the policeman that he had been drinking. The police report says he also admitted that a half-empty beer beside him was his.

When the policeman handcuffed him, he began to yell and curse, so the policeman added disorderly conduct to his charges of public drunkenness and open container. The policeman took the man to Conway Medical Center for clearance for jail.

■ A Conway policeman stopped a car because the driver was traveling 53 in a 35 mph zone on U.S 378 headed toward Mill Pond Road, according to a Conway police report.

The driver told the policeman that he was driving fast because he had to get home because he was driving with a beginner’s permit only.

The policeman reported smelling the odor of marijuana when he spoke with the 16-year-old. The teen admitted to police that he had been smoking marijuana, but said it was earlier in the day and there was no more.

However, the policeman found a plastic bag containing a green leafy substance and a scale commonly used to weigh marijuana. The driver then told the policeman that he had just sold marijuana. He called his mom to come because he was about to receive juvenile summonses for simple possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.

He was also issued citations for speeding and beginners permit violation. The police report says the marijuana weighed 22.12 grams.

■ A Conway policeman went to Farmwood Circle to check on a report of someone breaking into an automobile and took down a description of the suspect, according to a Conway police report.

The policeman later found someone who met the description of the suspect, He put him into his police cruiser and took him to the person whose car had been broken into; however, the victim said he was not the person he had seen.

Because the teen’s backpack smelled of marijuana, the policeman checked and found two plastic bags holding a green leafy substance, a clear glass Mason jar holding a plastic bag with a green leafy substance and another glass jar with some green seeds and stems and two black scales commonly used to weigh marijuana, the police report says.

The teen also had a gold iPhone 7S, black book sack, a multi-colored Polo hoodie and $347 in cash.

The green leafy substance weighed 62.9 grams. He was charged with possession with intent to distribute marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia and was released to a parent.

■ A Conway man was passed out on the side of Wendy’s at about 4 p.m. on a recent afternoon, according to a Conway police report.

A policeman walked toward the man trying many times to awaken him. He finally nudged his foot while yelling at him and that brought him around. The man smelled of alcohol and told the policeman he had been drinking and that there was still alcohol in a cup that he had.

The police report says the man stumbled as he walked away from the hill and onto the flat parking lot.

He was charged with public drunkenness and taken to jail.

Vehicle crimes

■ A witness told a Conway policeman that someone had broken into a truck on Farmwood Circle. The witness described the suspect who had already fled. The policeman looked for the suspect, but didn’t find him. The vehicle’s owner said only a few dollars that he had on the dashboard were missing.

The victim took a picture of the suspect from his video surveillance, but the policeman had not found him when this report was written.

■ A Conway man told Horry County police that a friend, who stores his recreational vehicle at the same storage yard that he does, told him that his RV had been broken into and he needed to check it.

The man says he went to the intersection of Highway 319 and U.S. 701 North where he found the window on the side door of his 2015 Jayco Precept damaged and the door open.

The man went in, but didn’t notice anything missing.

The policeman says he saw some dirt that resembled a footprint, but was unable to see any kind of markings on the shoeprint.

Police contacted officials with the storage unit to see if they had any surveillance video of the incident.

■ A 14-year-old girl was turned over to the S.C. Department of Juvenile Justice in Columbia after her grandmother told Horry County police that she took her keys and her car while she was sleeping, according to an Horry County police report.

When the granddaughter returned she was walking. She told her grandmother that she and a neighbor had been in an accident on Carriage Road at Daffodil Drive.

The girl said she let the boy drive and that’s when the accident happened.

The policeman talked with the neighbor who admitted that he was driving when the accident happened. He said they got scared and ran.

The S.C. Highway Patrol gave the man a ticket, and the policeman took the young girl to the J. Reuben Long Detention Center to wait for DJJ to take her to Columbia.

The police report doesn’t say what the girl is charged with, but the case title is listed as grand larceny of a motor vehicle, valued at $10,000 or more.

■ Conway police were called to The Cove Apartments on S.C. 544 at about 8:15 a.m. on a recent morning where a young Conway woman told them her car was missing.

She said she parked the vehicle in the parking lot at about midnight the previous night and left it unlocked with the keys inside.

The next morning when she came out to go to work, her $17,000 Toyota Camry was gone.

A young Conway man told the policeman that the key fob to his truck was inside the center console of the Camry. Also missing were a Carolina Panthers jersey and a Yeti cooler.

■ A Conway policeman working security at a recent Conway High School football game was approached by a Conway woman who said when she left her car, she put her pocketbook under the front driver’s seat and locked the vehicle, according to a Conway police report.

When she returned about three hours later, she found that someone had broken out a window and stolen her pocketbook. She had canceled her important cards before the policeman got to the car.

The policeman said three days later he reviewed the school’s security footage, but wasn’t able to see anyone responsible for the theft.

He’s got a gun!

A Conway woman says she was sitting in her living room doing her homework at about 6 a.m. on a recent morning when she heard a noise like the back door slamming shut, according to a Conway police report.

She says she got out of her chair, turned around and saw a man with a gun standing behind her.

She said the man was dressed in black with a bandana covering his face. He was wearing sunglasses and a hood on his head.

She told the policeman she ran out of the house to a neighbor’s home where she called 911.

She said when she was ringing her neighbor’s doorbell she saw the man run toward a white van-style vehicle before getting in.

Driver has a gun

A Conway man says that about 6:30 p.m. on a recent evening, he confronted the driver of a blue pickup truck who had been driving recklessly in his neighborhood. The victim approached the driver while he was stopped at a neighbor’s residence on Hillmont Court in the Conway area of Horry County, according to an Horry County police report.

The two exchanged words before the driver of the truck pointed a handgun directly at him. The driver then got back into the truck and drove away. There were no injuries. Horry County police tried without success to find the truck driver.

Redactions on the report make it impossible to know if the truck driver was male or female or where he or she lives.

She’ll get back at them

Members of the City of Conway grounds crew and code enforcement called police after a Conway woman yelled at and cursed them, according to a Conway police report.

When police got to the Smith Jones Recreation Center at about 1:30 p.m. on a recent afternoon, one of them said when he tried to speak with the woman, she said, “If you weren’t wearing that uniform I would stab you with a knife.

The police report says the officers tried to the situation, but the woman kept yelling at the policemen and the staff members.

Two officers then charged the woman with disorderly conduct and handcuffed her.

As they walked toward the police cruiser, the woman reportedly kept yelling saying that she was going to take their kids, houses and pensions.

She was taken to jail.

Out $150

Witnesses told a Conway policeman that a man came into Walgreens asking a lot of questions about buying a green dot MoneyPak. The suspect then paid three $50 bills to pay for a $140 pack, according to a Conway police report.

After the employee used a pen that showed the money was counterfeit, the employee asked the suspect to wait and left the front cashier counter, according to the police report.

The suspect then left the business and got into an automobile waiting in the parking lot.

A Walgreens official gave the policeman a picture of the suspect.


I'm the editor of the Horry Independent, a weekly newspaper in Conway, South Carolina. I cover city hall and courts, among many other subjects. Know of a good story? Call me at 843-488-7241.

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