A man who used his truck to smash several vehicles in a Fort Mill, South Carolina retail parking lot, pinning one individual between two cars, was stopped by one of the drivers who had a legally-carried handgun with him.
Witnesses said the suspect got in his black truck and continuously slammed into three to four cars. He was stopped by one of the drivers, who was carrying a gun. The man with the gun allegedly hit the suspect in the head with the weapon.
“I thought he shot him, but he had pistol-whipped the fellow and that’s what made the gun go off,” said witness John Simpson.
The York County Sheriff’s Office said the person with the gun will not face charges and is a legal concealed-carry gun owner.
“I’m glad the young fellow’s not being charged or anything because he had incredible restraint,” said Simpson.
It’s unclear at this point what prompted the driver of the truck to turn the parking lot into his own demolition derby, but once he gets out of the hospital and into a courtroom, we’ll probably learn more. Right now he’s facing a slew of charges related to the attack, according to York County Sheriff Kevin Tolson.
The driver of the truck will be charged with assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature and property damage crimes, Tolson said. The driver was taken to the hospital and remains at Piedmont Medical Center, according to Tolson and a sheriff’s office report. Detectives have arrest warrants for him, Tolson said.
“It is our intent to charge the suspect upon his release from the hospital,” Tolson said.
When officers arrived on scene they found a chaotic situation unfolding, and it took a few minutes to actually figure out what had happened, since the initial call to authorities was about a man with a gun, not a guy in a truck on a rampage.
Responding officers found a man holding a gun in the parking lot and ordered him to drop the weapon and get on the ground, the report stated. The man with the gun, later identified as a victim in the incident, complied with officer commands, deputies said.
Deputies then found another victim trapped between a pickup truck and another vehicle, deputies said. That victim was freed by officers, according to the report.
Then deputies found the suspect on his back in the parking lot, according to the report. Witnesses and victims told deputies the suspect slammed his truck into vehicles, injuring at least three people, according to Tolson and the report.
Vehicles were hit so hard that some were pushed onto a sidewalk, the report stated.
The driver of that truck is lucky that no one was seriously injured, including himself. As for the armed citizen, I’m glad he’s not facing any charges for stopping the guy. In some jurisdictions the fact that the firearm discharged while he was pistol-whipping the driver could have lead an anti-gun prosecutor or law enforcement official to try and haul him in to court along with the guy responsible for the damage to property and injury to several people.