Crime & Public Safety

New charges for man police say was involved in fatal 2018 shooting on Hilton Head

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A Hilton Head man’s charges have been increased following the death of a man who he assaulted during a shooting in 2018 near Sea Pines Circle, according to the 14th Circuit Solicitor’s Office.

Derrick Frazier was originally charged with second-degree assault and battery in the shooting of Christopher Fells on Aug. 4. Now, he’s been indicted with assault and battery by mob resulting in death, according to the solicitor’s office.

A “mob” is defined by the South Carolina Code of Laws as an “assemblage of two or more persons,” and the new charge is punishable by 30 years or more in jail.

Fells, 39, died in January in a Florida hospital, The Island Packet has previously reported.

He was shot multiple times in the back, shoulder and neck around 2:30 a.m. in the parking lot of the Kangaroo Express gas station on Palmetto Bay Road Aug. 4. Fells was hospitalized with severe injuries from August until his death, The Island Packet has previously reported.

At the time of his death, the solicitor’s office said it would review the charges for the men involved in the incident, including Frazier, Joseph Burton and Shaquille Za’Quan Green.

What happened on Aug. 4?

A fight that started between several men inside the store continued into the parking lot where Burton allegedly got a handgun from a car and shot Fells, the Sheriff’s Office said at the time.

Frazier allegedly assaulted the victim prior to the shots being fired. The men ran away before deputies got to the scene, an August news release said.

Burton, 25, Frazier, 26, and Green, 26, were charged in August in connection with the shooting.

Derrick Frazier, Joseph Burton
Derrick Frazier (LEFT) and Joseph Burton (RIGHT) were both charged in connection with the Aug. 4 gas station shooting on Hilton Head. Beaufort County Detention Center

Burton was charged with attempted murder and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. Frazier and Green were charged with second-degree assault and battery.

Burton’s $225,000 bond and Frazier’s $75,000 bond that he was released on two days after the shooting were revoked in late August.

At the time of the shooting, Burton and Frazier were out on bond on previous charges, so their arrests in connection with the shooting were violations of their previous terms, 14th Circuit Solicitor’s Office spokesperson Jeff Kidd told The Island Packet in August.

In August 2017, Frazier was charged with first degree burglary, possession of a firearm during the commission of a violent crime and four counts of attempted murder after he allegedly shot and injured a child, according to court records.

In July 2016, Frazier was charged with pointing and presenting firearms at a person, according to court records.

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Katherine Kokal moved to South Carolina in 2018 after graduating from the University of Missouri and loves everything about the Lowcountry that isn’t a Palmetto Bug. She has won South Carolina Press Association awards for in-depth and government beat reporting. On the weekends, you can find Kati doing yoga and hiking Pinckney Island.