Neighbors say shooting that killed Aiken officer was wake-up call

Scott Richardson
Scott Richardson, Aiken Public Safety officer killed in the line of duty in December 2011. (WRDW-TV / Dec. 21, 2011)
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News 12 at 11 o'clock / Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2011

AIKEN, S.C. -- The crime scene is cleared from Tuesday night's shooting that killed Aiken Public Safety Officer Scott Richardson and injured another, but as the law enforcement community mourns, the neighborhood where it happened is still in shock.

"All I heard was shots going off. Pow, pow, pow pow, and I didn't know what it was," said one woman who lives in Pace's Run Apartments. "I thought it was just firecrackers until I came outside, and somebody told me, 'That's not firecrackers, that's guns going off.'"

That's when she ran inside her apartment. Meanwhile, outside, three people had been shot, including Richardson, who was shot in the head.

"It was just a sight I don't think anyone wants to see," she said. "Seeing that is life-changing. I'm 19, and I still have a whole life to live, and I honestly really don't want to be shot."

She's still shaken up about it, so she didn't want News 12 to release her name, but she does want people to know crimes like Tuesday's don't have to happen in her neighborhood.

"It's mainly drugs," she said of the crimes in Pace's Run, but they're crimes she says shouldn't happen in a complex full of kids.

"What I do is tell them that's something they shouldn't be seeing," she said. "I think there's a lot of kids out here, and [adults] that should stand up, but they're not."

Even though she doesn't want you to know who she is, she wants her voice to be heard. She says she's standing up and calling for change in her community.

"There's a lot of things that people try and hide, and I think if they wouldn't hide them, and if they would at least help the community some, then it would be better, it would be more sophisticated for the kids around here," she said. "Instead of having drugs in here or having a shooting in here. If somebody's not going to stand up for it, then who will? Police can't help us if we don't talk, or if we don't talk to the news people. Nobody's going to help us if we just keep it all inside because nobody's going to know that we seen anything, and to me I don't think, as a 19 year old, I don't think that's fair."