Walmart on Church Street in Conway was evacuated around noon on Tuesday after shoppers think a man might have made a verbal comment about a bomb at the store.

Walmart management made the call to evacuate the store.

Lois Chestnut had completed her grocery shopping and was preparing to check out when an announcement was made for store associates and customers to exit the store and move away from the building.

“It was a normal shopping day,” Chestnut said. “There were a lot of people. Everybody stayed calm and I guess everyone figured out it was something like a bomb threat.”

According to Chestnut, she and many other customers opted to leave instead of waiting around for officials to allow customers back inside.

“There were a lot of people leaving,” she said. “I imagine they had a lot of groceries to put back up.”

Another shopper who asked not to be identified said she had just entered the store and was in the produce area when associates began motioning for her to follow them.

“Everyone was sorta walking fast,” she said. “Everyone was talking and getting out of there. There was no hullabaloo. I wasn’t excited or scared. I just came out with the crowd.”

The shopper said she returned later in the day to pick up the items she needed.

An employee who answered the telephone at Walmart Wednesday morning said the manager was not at the store, and referred the call to Walmart’s corporate headquarters.

The corporate office responded to a request for information about the incident with a written statement from Charles Crowson, senior management of corporate communications.

“Our customers and associates should feel safe any time they’re in our stores, and we’re frustrated by what happened Tuesday morning,” he said. “The claim turned out to be a hoax, and we’re grateful police responded quickly. We’ll continue working with them to find the person responsible.”

A Conway police report says the suspect told employees that he had left a bomb inside and it would go off in 20 minutes.

The police report says police talked with the suspect outside of the building. The report says the suspect told police he told the Walmart employees there was a bomb in the building. He was taken to jail.

Robert Lloyd Jones, 78, of Conway was charged with making a bomb threat or conveying false information about a bomb threat, according to Horry County jail records. He was released from jail about 12 hours later on a $10,000 bond.

Armed robbery arrest

Two Florence residents were charged with armed robbery this past week after three employees at the AT&T store on Church Street in Conway told police they had been robbed, according to information provided by Conway police.

The employees said two people came into the store armed with handguns and stole a large number of items before fleeing.

Jacody Gunter, 23, is also charged with three counts of kidnapping and possession of weapon during a violent crime.

Mi’don Holloway, 20, was charged with armed robbery.

Police say they are continuing to investigate this case and ask anyone with information to call (843) 248-1790.

Stolen gun

Conway police were called to Hemingway Street Saturday in reference to shots being fired.

The responding officer said he heard shots fired in the area of Ninth Avenue and U.S. 378 and located a vehicle in the ditch at the intersection. According to the Conway police report, the vehicle was unoccupied but a window appeared to have been shot out. The police report says two handguns were recovered from the vehicle. One of the handguns was run for a NCIC check and dispatch confirmed that it was stolen from Marion County, the police report says. Additional items were found in the vehicle and secured as evidence in the case and the vehicle was towed.

Officer assaulted

A Valencia, Calif., man was arrested after police were called to Cove Apartments Sunday for a report of an officer being assaulted.

The responding officer was flagged by a witness who advised that a security guard was attempting to arrest an individual and that he was resisting. The responding officer followed the witness to the hallway of the apartment building where he observed the offender punch the victim and attempt to pull away. The security guard grasped the offender by the shirt pulling him back to the concrete where they again began to struggle. The responding officer instructed the suspect to put his hands behind his back, but he refused. With the assistance of a Coastal Carolina policeman, the officer physically arrested the man who continued to fight. EMS was called and the emergency workers transported the suspect to Conway Medical Center for treatment. After being cleared, the suspect was transported to J. Reuben Long Detention Center and charged with public disorderly conduct for urinating in public, pedestrian drunk and third degree assault for punching the officer.

Shooting victim dies

Conway police were called to 605 Hill St. Monday night regarding shots being fired, according to a Conway police report. The responding officer determined that shots had been fired on the roadway and inside the residence at 605 Hill St. The victim, Aswan Kahiem Rogers, was transported to the emergency room at Conway Medical Center with a gunshot wound. He was then taken to Grand Strand Medical Center where he died of his wounds, the police report says. An investigation is ongoing.

Break-ins reported

Police were called to Ellie Lane on Saturday regarding an automobile being broken into, according to an Horry County police report. The victim told responding officers that someone broke the rear sliding glass window in his vehicle and removed a Bose Stereo Face Plate valued at $300 and approximately $10 in loose change. The subject used a shovel that was in the bed of the truck to break the window, the police report says. The shovel was found in the yard a few feet from the vehicle and placed into evidence for print processing.

Police were called to a residence on Cates Bay Road regarding a breaking and entering auto according to an Horry County police report.

The complainant said he parked his Dodge Ram on Bluewater Road at 8:45 p.m. on Thursday to go hunting, and when he returned about 7 a.m. the following morning a Browning Rifle and Streamlight flashlight were missing from the vehicle, the report says.

Police were called to a Myrtle Beach residence this past week regarding a larceny from an automobile that occurred on Troutman Circle in Conway according to an Horry County police report. The complainant told an officer that a Glock handgun was taken from his vehicle that was left unlocked.

Stabbing victim treated

A Durham, N.C., resident was transported to the Grand Strand Medical Center Friday after being stabbed at the Jameson Inn at the University at 2376 U.S. 501 East according to an Horry County police report.

According to the police report, the responding officer found the victim lying in the parking lot. His breathing was labored and he couldn’t talk, according to the police report.

The hotel staff gave police the room number the man was staying in, and officers talked with the people in the room who appeared to have been sleeping. The occupants told officers they did not know anything about what was going on. The police report says officers were unable to locate any witnesses and there was no surveillance in the area where the incident took place.

Shooting reported in Loris

Two Loris people, one of them a juvenile, were arrested after police were called to Barts Road in Loris recently regarding a shooting, according to an Horry County police report.

As officers neared the scene, they received an update that the suspect was in an SUV. Police saw a van pulling out of Hunter’s Trail, and stopped it. There was a man in the vehicle, who had dropped a woman off on Hunter’s Trail.

Police left the stop and returned to the scene where several people were yelling at each other at the end of Bart’s Road and Hunter’s Trail, according to an Horry County police report. Police took a man and woman into custody because of their reluctance to stop arguing. The woman who was involved in the argument told police the man who was being restrained was the shooter along with his brother.

Police walked across the street back to Bart’s Road where one victim said a suspect was shooting and a second was hanging out of a mint green car firing shots and a juvenile tried to hit her with the car.

According to the police report, the woman said the car left Bart’s Road and went back to Hunter’s Trail where the subjects again fired shots down Bart’s Road at the victim after she yelled at them. Several people began walking down Durham Lane and told the suspects to stop shooting because there were children everywhere. As the woman rounded the curve, she said she saw a suspect and another person arguing.

The police report says then she heard a car and turned around to see who it was. She said a second suspect was hanging out of the passenger window and began shooting into the crowd, striking a young man in the shoulder. A second victim jumped into a ditch to avoid being shot or hit by the vehicle.

A witness told police she was outside and heard gunfire and what sounded like bullets flying in her direction. She sought safety by lying on the floor in her house, according to the police report. She said she heard a car speed by, but did not see it. A fourth person told police she was walking along Bart’s Road trying to see where the people went. She said she yelled at someone on Hunter’s Trail and they fired at her from across Highway 19. The witness told police she believes the incident is the result of a gang problem.

A young man was charged with two counts of failure to appear, attempted murder and resisting arrest.


■ Police were called to Kiskadee Loop on Sunday in reference to a burglary complaint. One of the victims said he found the back sliding glass door open and it appears that someone used a pry tool to force open the sliding glass door and gain entry into the apartment, according to a Conway police report. The case was turned over to the Detective Division for further investigation.

■ Police were called to Lincoln Park Drive Saturday regarding a possible burglary. The responding officer spoke to a neighbor who said she heard glass break, and when she looked outside at her neighbor’s house she saw a man wearing a red shirt, possibly using a stick to break a window to the rear of the house, according to a Conway police report. The woman yelled and the man ran away. Police were unable to contact the owner of the house and left a business card at the front door and asked the neighbor to notify the owner about the incident.

■ Conway police have arrested one person for a break-in at Stalvey’s Bait and Tackle that happened at 1:30 on a recent morning, according to a Conway police report.

David Mitchell, 37, turned himself in at the county jail after learning that police were looking for him.

The police report says when a policeman arrived at Stalvey’s, he saw that the back door of the business had been forced open.

Missing items included beer, cigarettes and a large screen television.

Later that day, a Conway policeman secured a warrant for burglary, second offense, because the suspect has four prior convictions for burglary, according to the Conway police report.

Police say they went to the suspect’s mom’s house looking for him, but he wasn’t there.

The boyfriend of the suspect’s mom told police the suspect is not welcome at their home, the police report says.

The policeman later voided the first warrant and replaced it with one for burglary, second offense, violent. He was still in jail Monday facing a $25,000 bond.

■ Police were called to Eighth Avenue this past week regarding a burglary complaint.

The victim told officers someone entered a building on her property and stole a red Trek Mountain Bike.

■ Conway police recently responded to a report of a burglary on Maple Avenue. The victim told police she fell asleep in her bedroom at about 3 p.m. on a recent day and was awakened by an unknown man inside of her home. After the suspect fled, the woman said she realized that something had been stolen from her room. The police report doesn’t say what was stolen.

Police are continuing to investigate.

■ Someone broke into M&M Outdoor Equipment at about 3:45 on a recent morning. Police say there was forced entry into the building. The Conway police report doesn’t say if anything was missing.

Neglecting a child

A caller, who refused to give any information about herself, told the Conway police chief’s secretary recently that there was a 6-year-old child in the city who might have been sexually assaulted, according to a Conway police report.

Police reported the incident to a S.C. Department of Social Services worker, who went to the residence and took custody of two children.

The DSS worker told police that the living conditions inside the house were deplorable, which caused her to remove the children.

The police report says police were confused about the caller’s comments saying she kept referring to a “beat down” that happened there and she didn’t know anybody’s name other than the mother and a child.

The report says the caller seemed to show much concern and kept talking about the suspect, house and fight that allegedly happened.

An arrest warrant says the child had been sexually assaulted for two and one-half months; the suspect knew about it and prohibited the child from disclosing any information about the “act.”

The woman was charged with unlawful neglect by a legal custodian.

The suspect turned herself in to Conway police, who took her to jail. She was released the same day on a $10,000 bond.

Shooting into a house

A Conway man was charged with attempted murder after a witness says he saw him standing on Wren Lane shooting into a house that had seven people inside, according to an Horry County police report.

Tevin Daiwan Gause, 23, of Longs was taken to the Horry County Detention Center after being captured by U.S. Marshals. Gause is charged with six counts of attempted murder and one count of discharging a weapon into a dwelling. He was still in jail Monday without a bond having been set.

An arrest warrant says a 19-year-old boy was struck, but the warrant is redacted so it doesn’t reveal what struck him or where. The warrant says multiple bullet casings were collected at the scene and multiple bullet holes were evident across the length of the house.

The warrant says the injured teen is personally acquainted with the suspect.

The police report says the shooting happened at 2:30 one morning this past week.

The homeowner told police when he got home from work at about 7 a.m. he saw several bullet holes along the side of his residence.

The police report says the injured teen told the homeowner that he believed a bullet might have grazed him.

The teen told the homeowner that there were about six people inside the house when he saw an automobile’s headlights shining into the living room window. He says he heard several gunshots come from outside into the house. Everyone inside ran and hid, but he ran to a window in the rear of the residence where he saw a shadow of someone running around the rear of the residence.

After the shooting, the teen says he heard a vehicle drive away, but he didn’t know the make of the vehicle. He thinks it was some kind of Cadillac.

The teen says that’s when he checked himself and saw that he was bleeding.

Police collected shell casings and spotted footprints.

Police then went to check on a girl who had been in the house at the time of the shooting that might have been injured, according to the police report.

They went to her house to check on her. They found that she had an injury, but she wasn’t sure how she got it, the police report says.

She remembered seeing about three vehicles leaving the scene after the shooting.

The homeowner said there had been a similar incident at his girlfriend’s home. At that point everyone said they had no idea who might have been doing the shooting, the police report says.

More shooting

Conway police were called to the Conway Medical Center on a recent afternoon regarding a shooting victim, according to a Conway police report.

The responding officer says the victim was a 12-year-old child, who was there with his mom and grandfather. The police report says the child’s hand was covered with a bandage and he was crying from pain.

The child’s mom told police the victim got the gun out of a truck parked at Little Caesars Pizza on Rivertown Boulevard.

She said the truck and the gun belong to a Loris friend whose name she provided to police. She said she drove the truck to pick up a pizza and she was inside when the child was injured.

She says she turned around and saw the child inside the restaurant bleeding. She ran from the business and used his shirt to wrap his hand before driving to her parents’ home where she told her father what happened and asked him to drive her and the child to the hospital. They left the truck and the gun at her father’s house.

Police took pictures of the blood in the truck.

The child told police he got the gun outside, but he didn’t know what he intended to do with it, according to the police report.

A policewoman says she held the child’s hand while the emergency room staff cleaned and treated the child’s wound because he was so upset, and a second officer comforted the child, the police report says.

A policeman went to Little Caesars and found blood on the sidewalk in front of the door.

A Little Caesars employee promised to provide police with a video when it became available.

Sexual assault

A Ninth Avenue woman told Conway police Sunday that she had been sexually assaulted. An officer escorted the woman to Conway Medical Center, according to the Conway police report.

Vehicle crimes

■ Police were called to an apartment on Maple Avenue on Sunday regarding a breaking and entering auto complaint. The victim, a Jamestown resident, said a neighbor informed him that his window was broken. According to the Conway police report, everything was okay when the neighbor left about 7:45, but the glass in the passenger side window was broken when he returned about 10 p.m. Additional damage was located on the door. The police report says the victim stated that the only thing missing was a Samsung Galaxy Note 3 cellphone.

■ Police were called to Green Pond Circle regarding an automobile break-in this past Thursday night. The victim said someone entered her unlocked vehicle and took a Dell Laptop belonging to Horry County Schools.

■ Police were called to Bells Bay Apartments regarding suspicious activity. The caller told police residents of one of the apartments were not answering their door, and their vehicle door was open and the rear window smashed out. Police contacted the vehicle owner at her residence, and discovered that someone threw a piece of cement through the rear window and stole a purse.

■ Two vehicles were stolen over recent days in Conway.

On S.C. 544, a young Conway man told police someone took his 2016 Kawasaki ZX motorcycle that was parked outside of his residence when he left for training that morning. He valued the vehicle at $15,000.

Three days later, the victim told police a person who had worked on his bike made comments about how he wanted the bike, adding that the bike was actually his, not the victim’s. The victim said the guy who works on his bike drives a green truck. He said he watched a video of the bike being stolen and there was a green truck in the video.

He said some of the suspect’s friends joked about how the suspect stole a new bike and crashed it, according to the police report.

■ A North Carolina woman told Conway police that she parked her 2003 BMW on the side of the parking lot at Goodwill on Church Street, according to a Conway police report.

When she came out about two hours later, it was gone. She said she left the SUV unlocked with the key in the center console.

Horry County dispatch notified police the next day that the vehicle had been recovered in Nichols. The police report says it had been burned.

■ A Conway Septuagenarian told police he left his car unlocked on Kershaw Road recently where someone got in and took about $20 of change, prescription eyeglasses and sunglasses. He estimated his loss at about $635.

Throwing and cursing

A resident of 18th Avenue in Conway told police that a young man was throwing things at his fence and cursing at him, according to a Conway police report.

The suspect told police he threw a stick at his neighbor’s fence and went on to describe the stick’s size and shape.

He also told police he was upset about a family issue, the police report says. He was charged with disorderly conduct and taken to jail.

Alcohol/drug incidents

■ A witness called Conway police at about 2 p.m. on a recent day saying she had seen a driver run off the road and almost hit seven cars on the way to Walmart, according to a Conway police report.

Police found the vehicle in the Walmart parking lot with the driver sitting in the front driver’s seat behind the steering wheel.

The Conway police report says the Mullins woman appeared to be swaying in her seat and seemed disoriented.

The policeman says the suspect told him she walks with a walker and couldn’t put any weight on one foot so field sobriety tests had to be altered to accommodate her.

She performed poorly on the tests and was taken in for a breath test, which registered 0.0.

According to the police report, the suspect told police she had Xanax in her purse. She said she had also taken Tramodel, Oxycodone and Nourtin. The policeman says he found a red Altoids can in the vehicle with several pills inside. At least four of them are classified in Schedule II. The police report says the suspect did not have the pills in bottles and didn’t have a prescription for the pills she had with her.

After a policeman found that the woman had a previous conviction for driving under the influence, he charged her with driving under the influence, second offense.

■ Three teenage girls, one each from Hopkins, Ladson and Columbia, were arrested after Conway police were called to Coastal Club Apartments to check on two intoxicated girls and one person who might have been unconscious.

Police say when they arrived, a Coastal Carolina University officer had the three girls lying in the walkway of a building. The police report says the girls were “somewhat unresponsive” and appeared to have vomited on themselves.

The girls told police they had been drinking at a party. Conway firemen went to the scene to treat the teens before taking them to Conway Medical Center.

The girls were admitted to the emergency room for the possible alcohol overdose. The girls were all charged with minor in possession/consumption of alcohol by a minor.

■ A Conway policeman says he found a wanted Conway man at a Conway residence where he arrested and handcuffed him. While searching the man, the policeman says he found seven white pills in the man’s pants pocket. They were identified as methadone 10 mg, a Schedule II drug.

He was taken to jail and charged with possession of Schedule II narcotics.

Poor treatment of a dog

Conway police responded to the Walmart parking lot concerning a dog being locked inside of a car on a recent morning, according to a Conway police report.

The dog was reportedly in a cage with no water. All four windows were cracked slightly, but the outside temperature was about 90 degrees.

A witness wrote a statement saying the dog had been locked inside the car for more than an hour.

The officer met with a North Carolina woman explaining to her that an hour was an unreasonable amount of time to leave an animal locked inside a vehicle.

She was cited for ill treatment of animals.

Sparring at the hospital

A staff member at Conway Medical Center told police she heard a man and his wife arguing in the emergency room, according to a Conway police report.

The staffer told police that the patient’s husband became agitated with the hospital staff. His wife said he argued with her and tried to pull her IV from her arm, according to the Conway police report.

After that he slapped her on the left side of her face with his open hand.

A nurse in the emergency room wrote a statement for police saying she heard the couple arguing.

The police report says the husband was charged with second-degree criminal domestic violence. The police report says the suspect has two prior convictions for domestic violence.

The police report says the victim refused to be photographed and refused to give a written statement about what happened. She also refused to sign a bond notification form.

The police report says there is a video of the incident.

The suspect was still in jail Monday facing a $5,000 bond.


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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