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Crime & Courts

South Carolina Trooper Seriously Wounded In Roadside Shooting

Patrolman shot in the face during traffic stop …

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A South Carolina Highway Patrol (SCHP) trooper was reportedly seriously wounded during a roadside shooting in Bamberg County early Sunday morning, Lowcountry law enforcement sources familiar with the situation have confirmed to this news outlet.

Deputies with the Bamberg County sheriff’s office responded to the incident – which reportedly occurred during a routine traffic stop on U.S. Highway 78 between Bamberg and Denmark, S.C. at approximately 3:30 a.m. EDT.

The trooper – later identified as lance corporal Bentrice A. Frazier – was shot in the face, sources familiar with the situation told this news outlet. Following the shooting, Frazier was transferred to the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) in Charleston, S.C.

Frazier, 55, is a native of Fairfax, S.C. – a town of approximately 1,500 located in Allendale County.

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Lance corporal Bentrice A. Frazier (S.C. Department of Public Safety)

Sources familiar with the situation say Frazier – who has served Troop 7 in the Palmetto Lowcountry since 2018 – is currently in stable condition at MUSC after undergoing emergency surgery.

The identity of the suspect who fired the weapon – and who later crashed his vehicle in a nearby town – has not been released.

“Law enforcement is conducting an investigation regarding an incident on Highway 78 just west of Denmark in Bamberg County,” a statement from Bamberg County sheriff Kenny Bamberg noted. “There will be a temporary road closure of Highway 78 beginning at Highway 321 up to McKenna Lane.”

“This was an isolated incident and there is no threat to the community,” Bamberg added.

SCHP troopers confirmed the road closure – and the subsequent reopening of the thoroughfare at approximately 1:15 p.m. EDT – but have not released any details related to the shooting.

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Agents of the S.C. State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) were requested by Bamberg County to lead the investigation into the shooting, local law enforcement sources confirmed. SLED investigates officer-involved shootings as a matter of protocol in the vast majority of local law enforcement jurisdictions in the Palmetto State – presenting independent, investigative reports to the solicitor with jurisdiction over the county or municipality where the shooting transpired.

“SLED was requested by the Bamberg County sheriffs office and the South Carolina Highway Patrol to investigate an officer involved shooting in Bamberg County where a law enforcement officer was shot,” SLED executive affairs director Ryan Alphin said in a statement.

A separate crime scene related to this incident has reportedly been cordoned off near Branchville, S.C. – a town of just over 1,000 located just across the border in neighboring Orangeburg County, S.C. Initial reports indicate the suspect from the Bamberg shooting was seriously injured during a traffic incident at this Orangeburg County crime scene.

Take a look …

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(Via: Bamby Benton/ Facebook)

“Our hearts are with the South Carolina Highway Patrol after a trooper was seriously injured this morning,” a tweet from Serve & Connect noted. “Our prayers are with the troopers family, the medical staff in their treatment, and for continued healing to all involved.”

This is a developing situation … please stay tuned for updates.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR …

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Will Folks (Brett Flashnick)

Will Folks is the founding editor of the news outlet you are currently reading. Prior to founding FITSNews, he served as press secretary to the governor of South Carolina. He lives in the Midlands region of the state with his wife and seven children.

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