By Mike McCombs
Beaufort High School was on lockdown Tuesday morning as a result of an altercation in the parking lot resulting in the discovery of a handgun on campus.
At approximately 10:30 a.m., City of Beaufort Police say a bystander intervened in a fight between 22-year-old De-Quarious Major, of St. Helena, and a relative.
According to the police, Major was driven to the campus by another relative and the fight occurred in the parking lot near the car in which he had been a passenger.
The bystander attempting to break up the fight saw a handgun inside the car and retrieved it to keep it from being used.
Beaufort High Student Resource Officer Eric Hayes arrived on the scene and attempted to detain Major, who became agitated and refused to comply with lawful directions to submit to being detained, at which time Officer Hayes drew his Taser and ordered Major to the ground. Major complied and was taken into custody without further incident.
Major was arrested and charged with Disturbing Schools, Possession of a Firearm on School Property and Interfering with an Officer. Major was transported to the Beaufort County Detention Center, where, as of Tuesday evening, he was awaiting a bond hearing.
According to the 14th Circuit Public Court Index, at the time of the incident, Major was out of jail on bond for murder and three counts of attempted murder from the June 3, 2019 killing of Clarence White III at the Circle K store on Lady’s Island,
Major was wearing a GPS ankle monitor during the incident, and the condition of the bond from his prior arrest was that he was to remain under house arrest.
Word of the lockdown spread quickly on social media as students texted family outside the school.
Just before 11:30 a.m., City of Beaufort Police posted a notice to the Beaufort High parents on Facebook.
“The disturbance at Beaufort High is under control, there was no threat to any students and the incident was limited to the parking lot,” the statement read. “The school was in a brief lock down, which is in the process of being lifted. More details will follow.”
At 11:35 a.m., Beaufort County School District Communications Director Candace Bruder-Brasseur confirmed the weapon was secured, law enforcement was on site and the lock down has been lifted.
Mike McCombs is the editor of The Island News and can be reached at TheIslandNews@gmail.com.