By JEFFREY COLLINS , Associated Press
FLORENCE, S.C. (AP) — Five South Carolina law enforcement officers were shot Wednesday — including one fatally — in a Florence County shooting in which the suspect has been taken into custody, authorities said.
Sheriff’s Deputy Chief Glenn Kirby confirmed the incident Wednesday, news outlets reported. Kirby said three Florence County sheriff’s deputies and two city officers were shot.
Florence County Coroner Keith von Lutcken said the dead officer was a member of the Florence city police department.
John Wukela, a city spokesman for the city, says city police, working with the sheriff’s office, were responding to an incident in the area when they came under fire. He did not have specific information on the numbers of officers involved but said some were seriously wounded.
“This is simply devastating news from Florence,” Gov. Henry McMaster tweeted. “The selfless acts of bravery from the men and women in law enforcement is real, just like the power of prayer is real.”
Thom Berry, spokesman for the State Law Enforcement Division, said the agency had sent crime scene technicians to assist officials in Florence but at this time had not been requested to help with any investigation.
Further details were not immediately available.
Authorities said the shootings happened in Vintage Place, an upscale neighborhood in the western part of the city.
Florence, a city in South Carolina’s northeastern corner home to roughly 37,000, sits at the convergence of Interstates 95 and 20. It’s the largest city in the region known as the Pee Dee, an area recently affected by heavy flooding in the wake of Hurricane Florence.
Associated Press writer Meg Kinnard contributed to this report from Columbia, South Carolina.