Police blotter for September 22nd-28th

11 mins read

Highway patrol asks for public’s help

The South Carolina Highway Patrol (SCHP) is seeking information from the public in identitying the driver of the vehicle involved in the fatal hit-and-run of a bicyclist on Hilton Head Island at approximately 2:40 a.m. Sept. 17.

The incident occurred on U.S. 278 westbound between the Fresh Market Shoppes and Leamington.

The victim, identified as 54-year-old Matthew Proctor, of Hilton Head Island, was pronounced dead at the scene.

Evidence identified and collected by SCHP indicates a burgundy/maroon vehicle struck Proctor on his bicycle and left the area.

Anyone who may have witnessed the incident is urged to contact SCHP Dispatch at 843-953-6010 or 1-800-768-1506.

To remain anonymous and to be considered for a monetary reward, contact CrimeStoppers at 1-888-CrimeSC.

Information sought in St. Helena Island murder

On the night of July 31, Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to a report of a gunshot victim found by a passing motorist in the driver’s seat of a vehicle on the side of Sam Doyle Road.

The motorist removed the male victim from the vehicle and performed CPR until Emergency Medical Services (EMS) arrived.

EMS transported the victim, identified as 21-year-old Marquise Singleton, of St. Helena Island, to Beaufort Memorial Hospital for treatment.

He died a short time later as result of multiple gunshot wounds.

The person/people responsible for Singleton’s murder has not been identified and remains at large.

Sheriff’s office investigators continue to look into the case and are asking for information from the public. Even the smallest, seemingly insignificant detail can provide focus to a criminal investigation.

Anyone who knows the identity of the suspect(s) or has any other information regarding this investigation is urged to contact Sgt. Angela Crumpton at 843-255-3707.

To remain anonymous and to be considered for a monetary reward, contact CrimeStoppers at 1-888-CrimeSC.

Former car dealership employee sentenced 

DeAnne Ogden
DeAnne Ogden

A former O.C. Welch employee who stole nearly $2 million from the Ford dealership in Hardeeville has been sentenced to serve eight years in prison.

DeAnne Ogden, 54, of Jesup, Ga., pleaded guilty Sept. 15 to breach of trust over $10,000.

As part of her restitution, Ogden has already turned over assets worth approximately $856,759, including her home in Jesup, a vacant lot next to her home, furniture, a Ford Raptor pickup, a Lincoln Navigator, a four-wheeler, two golf carts, her 401K account and jewelry.

Ogden worked for O.C. Welch Ford Lincoln Inc. for more than 10 years. As the assistant comptroller, Ogden was responsible for preparing checks to different vendors who sold parts to O.C. Welch for their parts and repair departments.

“The defendant went to great lengths to hide her theft from various accounts,” said Assistant Solicitor Francine Norz, the head of the White Collar Crime Division of the Fourteenth Circuit Solicitor’s Office.

The theft of approximately $1,943,819 occurred from June 2008 to October 2015. She was fired from O.C. Welch in November 2015. Circuit Court Judge Brooks Goldsmith handed down Ogden’s sentence.   After Ogden’s prison term, she must also serve five years of probation and repay the remaining restitution of $572,085.

Man shot, killed in Hardeeville

A man was shot and killed in Hardeeville on Sept. 15, and police are searching for the person/people responsible.

According to the Jasper County Sheriff’s Office, EMS responded to a call at about 7:30 a.m. at a home at 251 Stiney Road when a neighbor became concerned because the front door to the residence was open. The neighbor went in and found the victim, 43-year-old Kenyatta Austin, dead of gunshot wounds.

Investigators from the Jasper County Sheriff’s Office, along with South Carolina Law Enforcement Crime Scene Division, began processing the crime scene and are actively following up on leads.

If anyone has any information, they are asked to contact the Jasper County Sheriff’s Office at 843-726-7779 or the Silent Witness Tip Hotline at 1-800-446-1006.

Two wrecks take place in less than 24 hours

The Burton Fire District recently responded to two separate motor vehicle accidents in less than 24 hours in which two people were transported to the hospital and traffic was delayed.

The first wreck occurred at the intersection of Trask Parkway and Stuart Point Road between a pickup truck and a motorcycle.

The motorcyclist, who was wearing a helmet, appeared to have minor injuries and was transported to Beaufort Memorial Hospital. The driver of the pickup was not transported. One lane of Trask Parkway northbound was blocked for approximately 30 minutes.

Burton firefighters responded to their second motor vehicle accident at the intersection of Robert Smalls Parkway and Savannah Highway.

The two-vehicle accident resulted in moderate to heavy damages to both vehicles, a minivan and a passenger vehicle, and possibly serious injuries to the driver of minivan, who was transported to Beaufort Memorial Hospital.

The Robert Smalls and Savannah Highway intersection was blocked for approximately 45 minutes while emergency crews assisted the injured and removed roadway hazards.

Burton fire officials said that intersections along Trask Parkway, Robert Smalls Parkway and Parris Island Gateway continue to be problem areas for motor vehicle accidents. The Burton Fire District has responded to almost 210 motor vehicle accidents in 2016, with approximately 60 percent of those accidents occurring on these roadways, and many at intersections.

“Many of these accidents are happening at traffic-controlled and lit intersections,” said Burton Fire Lt. Alex Murray.

“Motorists should use caution when approaching an intersection even when having the right of way, obey traffic laws and signals, and judge approaching traffic conservatively before pulling out or turning.”

Kids invited to kickball versus Bluffton police, fire

If you’ve ever wanted to play kickball against police officers and firemen, this is your chance.

First Zion Missionary Baptist Church is inviting children from the Bluffton community to come out from 3-6 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 25, and play kickball against Bluffton Police Department officers and Bluffton Township firefighters.

“We want this to be a fun community event. This event gives the kids in the local neighborhoods a chance to come out and play and speak one-on-one with local police and firemen,” said L.J. Bush of First Zion Missionary Baptist Church. During the event, First Zion Missionary Baptist Church will provide refreshments for those attending.

The event will be held at Bluffton Eagles Field at 155 Buck Island Road.

Burton medic completes counter-terrorism course

Tradd Mills
Tradd Mills

Burton Fire Lieutenant Tradd Mills recently completed the selective and competitive Counter Narcotics and Terrorism Operational Medical Support (CONTOMS) course in Washington, D.C., increasing the Burton Fire District’s ability to provide services with today’s changing community threats.

On Sept. 16, Mills, who has been with the district for 10 years, completed a 56-hour intensive emergency medical program where students learned how to deliver advanced emergency medical care in unstable and threatening environments such as in Hurricane Katrina and at the Boston bombing.

From terrorism to school shootings, emergency crews are delivering life-saving care in new and unprecedented environments where innocent civilians are targets as well as the responders themselves.

Skills required in these situations are becoming increasingly specialized as responders may still face threats from shooters or secondary devices, along with having to work in extreme weather environments.

The Burton Fire District is one of only three fire departments in Beaufort County that provides advanced life support services with six paramedics, three of which have completed courses in tactical style emergency medicine delivery.

“It’s training we hope we never have to put to use,” said Burton Fire Chief Harry Rountree. “However, considering the nature of the community that we protect, which is a large military community that is at risk for hurricanes, and also considering the recent events in New York and Minnesota, it is both prudent and responsible that we are prepared to render the best emergency medicine to our citizens no matter what situation they are in.”

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