Crime & Public Safety

Beaufort County police chase ends with fiery crash into a tree, report shows

Here’s how Beaufort County police decide when to start — and stop — high speed chases

The Beaufort County Sheriff's Office and Bluffton Police Department follow a detailed set of rules regarding police pursuits. These rules determine when officers should start — and terminate — high speed chases.
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The Beaufort County Sheriff's Office and Bluffton Police Department follow a detailed set of rules regarding police pursuits. These rules determine when officers should start — and terminate — high speed chases.

A Beaufort County man was charged with failure to stop for blue lights, driving under suspension, DUI and second-degree domestic violence after leading Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office on a chase that resulted in a fiery crash in the Burton area Tuesday night, a police report says.

The report does not say the speed the chase reached.

The man’s vehicle ran off the right side of 121 William A. Campbell Road and struck a tree in the Seabrook area about 9 p.m. Tuesday. The Island Packet and Beaufort Gazette do not name individuals charged with misdemeanors unless there is a public interest.

Deputies found the man unconscious in the driver’s seat and the engine on fire, the report says. The deputies were unable to put out the fire with fire extinguishers from their vehicles and removed the man from his car through a window.

He was transported to Beaufort Memorial Hospital via ambulance with non-life threatening injuries and released within hours of arrival.

S.C. Highway Patrol is investigating the accident, the report says.

Deputies attempted to pull the man over for charges stemming from a Monday night domestic violence.

A police report says the man woke his girlfriend up at about 3 a.m. Monday by striking her multiple times in the arm with her cellphone. The phone broke during the attack and left multiple bloody cuts on her arm, the report notes.

The woman’s son witnessed the violence and attempted to fight the man, the report says.

In unrelated July incidents, police ended two high speed pursuits minutes prior to suspects crashing their vehicles into other vehicles.

On July 9, 7-year-old Caleb Brown, of St. Helena Island, and his stepmother, Ronda Brown, of Beaufort, died after a vehicle crash on S.C. 170. The car they were in was struck by a car involved in a police chase that had been terminated 13 minutes prior.

James Bush, 44, was charged with two felony counts of driving under the influence and one count of failure to stop for blue lights.

On July 19, two people were injured after a Hilton Head man wanted on an assault charge crashed the truck he was driving into their car on New Orleans Road.

Police ended the pursuit, which reached up to 90 mph, six minutes before the suspect, Aaron Green, crashed.

Green was arrested by the U.S. Marshals Service on July 29 after barricading himself in a North Charleston hotel. He was charged with assault and battery by a mob-third degree, intimidating a witness, unlawful carrying of a pistol, failure to stop for a blue light and other offenses.

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