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Here are the details on violence across river region in recent days

It’s been a violent past few days, with several shootings since Friday, three of them deadly.
Published: May. 24, 2021 at 7:50 AM EDT|Updated: May. 26, 2021 at 5:01 AM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - Just days after a wave of violence subsided in the CSRA, another flare-up of shootings has emerged, with four lives claimed in three days in Williston, Augusta and Aiken, plus two drive-by shootings.

The new crime wave comes on the heels of one in mid-May that left two people dead, eight people shot and one person stabbed within 12 hours.

Here’s a look at the latest incidents:

In the CSRA

RIDGE SPRING OFFICER-INVOLVED SHOOTING

Aiken County Sheriff Michael Hunt has requested that the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division conduct an investigation into an officer-involved shooting that happened Tuesday night.

At about 8 p.m., deputies responded to 4002 Columbia Highway North in Ridge Spring for a disturbance.

The 911 caller reported that there was an active disturbance and that there was a person armed with a gun.

Just after the deputies arrived at the home, they were confronted by a male armed with a handgun.

While deputies gave verbal commands to drop the weapon, the male pointed his weapon toward deputies, who responded by firing their weapons.

The male suspect was stuck once in his lower torso.

Deputies immediately secured the suspect and render first aid.

Aiken County emergency medical crews took the suspect to an area hospital with an injury that was not life-threatening. There were no other reported injuries.

When requested to investigate an officer-involved shooting, SLED’s goal is to conduct a thorough, independent criminal investigation as timely as is possible under the circumstances. SLED investigators will conduct interviews with all potential witnesses in this matter. Further, SLED will collect all relevant evidence and will forensically test such evidence as needed.

The incident in Aiken County was the 17th officer involved shooting in South Carolina in 2021. In 2020, there were 49 officer involved shootings in South Carolina; two involved the Aiken County Sheriff’s Office.

AIKEN COUNTY SHOOTING

In the most recent incident, two men were injured Monday night in a shooting at 1337 Hampton Ave. NW.

Around 6:51 pm, deputies responded to the location to investigate a report of gunfire. As deputies arrived at 1337 Hampton Ave. NW, they found two males with gunshot wounds to their lower extremities.

Both gunshot victims were taken to an area hospital in stable condition.

Witnesses reported seeing a green Cadillac Escalade with dark tint stop near the scene, but authorities later said it wasn’t related to the shooting.

WILLISTON DOUBLE HOMICIDE

A shooting in Williston left two people dead on Friday, and authorities on Monday announced an arrest in the case.

Brandon Antonio Williams, 28, of Barnwell County, was charged with two counts of murder, the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division said Monday.

The Barnwell County Coroner’s Office on Monday released the names of the victims, Barbara Williams, 45, and Jerome Williams Jr., 26, who were killed at their home at 160 Halford St.

The SLED investigation was requested by the Williston Police Department. Williams was booked at the Barnwell County Detention Center.

The case will be prosecuted by the 2nd Circuit Solicitor’s Office.

The victims’ bodies will be autopsied Tuesday in Newberry, according to authorities.

AUGUSTA SHOOTINGS

A Blythe man was fatally shot Saturday in Augusta, although authorities ultimately ruled it an act of self-defense.

At 9:43 p.m., Richmond County deputies responded to the 2300 block of Cougar Drive in reference to shots fired. Upon their arrival, they found a male victim that had been shot. Ira Green, 58, of the 100 Block of Perkins Road was pronounced dead on the scene.

Investigators learned Green had pointed a firearm at several people, at which time Green was shot by one of the victims, Christopher Hayes, 22, of Augusta, according to authorities.

No charges are being filed, as it was determined Hayes was acting in self-defense, deputies said.

An autopsy will be conducted at the Georgia Bureau of Investigation lab on Monday.

On Sunday, deputies responded to the 1700 block of Tamarind Way in the early morning on a report of an aggravated assault.

Deputies found one gunshot victim who had been struck in the right leg multiple times. The victim was taken to Augusta University Medical Center to be treated. Several shell casings and an unspent round of bullets were found at the scene.

Deputies also found another person who told them his vehicle’s radiator was struck by a stray bullet. The damage caused coolant from the radiator to leak onto the street.

Authorities are still looking for a suspect.

You can call the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office at 706-821-1020 if you have any information.

Ray Streetman
Ray Streetman(WRDW)

AIKEN SLAYING

Investigators said Monday they arrested Aaron Azeem Williams, 34, in connection with a shooting that was reported around 1:23 p.m. Sunday in the 500 block of Iris Lane.

When deputies arrived on scene, they followed a trail of blood from the roadway to a wooded area where they found an unresponsive male with blood stains on his torso.

The gunshot victim, later identified as by the Aiken County coroner as Dexter Sullivan, 26, died on the scene.

Prior to the shooting, witnesses reported seeing Williams in the passenger seat of a blue Honda Civic being driving by a female on Iris Lane.

When the vehicle came to a stop, witnesses told investigators that Williams and Sullivan got in a verbal argument and shots were fired.

Williams ran away on where he was later found at another house on Iris Lane, Aiken County deputies reported.

Williams was taken into custody by investigators without incident. Investigators have obtain warrants for Williams, charging him with murder and possession of a weapon during a violent crime.

Williams is currently being held in the Aiken County Detention Center.

Sullivan will be autopsied Wednesday in Newberry.

Aaron Azeem Williams
Aaron Azeem Williams(WRDW)

GLOVERVILLE DRIVE-BY

Aiken County deputies say at least 50 gunshots were fired early Friday in the area of Lawana Drive in Gloverville, with two houses struck.

It came exactly a week after another shooting at the same house sent 21-year-old Tyrese Washington to a hospital.

The shootings left neighbors terrified.

I was petrified,” said one neighbor, who wished to remain anonymous. “I was really scared, and children shouldn’t have to be scared. This just has to stop.”

On Friday, Washington’s house and another had bullet holes and broken glass from bullets.

Simpkins lives in the house next door that was struck, but she said Friday she hadn’t been staying there since the May 14 shooting. She and other neighbors say they fear for their kids’ safety.

“It’s not good,” another neighbor said. “It’s not safe. They should feel free to come outside and play and not have to worry about somebody having guns.”

WAYNESBORO SHOOTING

Police in Waynesboro put out a call to the public Monday to help find the suspect in a shooting that happened a few days ago.

Police are looking for Mack Cooper, 27, with an unknown address in Waynesboro. He’s wanted in connection with a shooting that occurred May 15 sometime before 3:38 a.m.

Police learned of the shooting when a victim showed up at the hospital with a gunshot wound just below the neck and above the chest, The bullet exited his back and he was treated at Augusta University Medical Center for an injury that was not life-threatening, according to police.

Police said they learned the shooting happened at a get-together in the 700 block of Dowell Avenue, and they identified Cooper as the suspect.

Anyone with information leading to the whereabouts of Cooper is asked to notify the Waynesboro Police Department Criminal Investigation Division at 706-284-9422.

Callers may remain anonymous.

Across the two-state

ATLANTA-AREA TRIPLE SHOOTING

Authorities say three people have been found shot to death at a condominium community south of Atlanta. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that the bodies were found early Sunday morning at the Camelot Condominium Complex in the city of South Fulton.

South Fulton police Lt. Derrick Rogers says officers were sent to the complex to investigate a report of shots fired. They found the bodies when they arrived. All three people were pronounced dead at the scene.

Police say they’re still working to learn the circumstances surrounding the shooting. Few other details were immediately available.

NORTH CHARLESTON CONCERT SHOOTING

Authorities say more than a dozen people were shot during a concert in South Carolina, including a 14-year-old girl who was killed.

North Charleston police said in a statement that their early information is that a fight broke out during what they called an unannounced and unauthorized concert in a neighborhood late Saturday.

North Charleston police Deputy Chief Scott Deckard says officers were called to the scene around 10:30 p.m. Saturday.

He told media outlets that more than a dozen people were shot. Police didn’t immediately release any information about a suspect or suspects, and few other details were released early Sunday.

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