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Aiken County highway shooting wasn’t random, deputies believe

Published: May. 19, 2022 at 9:12 AM EDT|Updated: May. 19, 2022 at 9:25 AM EDT
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GRANITEVILLE, S.C. (WRDW/WAGT) - Authorities don’t think the shooting of a driver Wednesday was a random crime.

That’s one of the new details we’re learning about the investigation into the shooting in the 1800 block of Jefferson Davis Highway.

The victim remained in critical condition Thursday at a local hospital.

Around 9:42 a.m. Wednesday, she called 911 telling dispatchers she’d been shot.

A deputy patrolling nearby came upon a white Honda Accord stopped in the middle of the road, finding the woman, who’d been shot at least once in her abdomen.

Deputies gave aid until emergency medical crews arrived and took her to an area hospital for emergency treatment.

Investigators have determined the shooting occurred while the victim was driving and that the shooter could have been driving in the same direction – toward Augusta.

At the scene soon after the shooting, News 12 saw what appeared to be multiple bullet holes in the front driver’s side doors of the Accord.

Investigators are asking for the community’s help with any information on the case, especially from any witnesses who were traveling on the highway at the time of the shooting.

The shooter should be considered armed and dangerous.

Anyone with information can call the Aiken County Sheriff’s Office at 803-648-6811. You can also provide information anonymously through Midlands Crime Stoppers. Your tip could earn you a chase reward of up to $1,000 for information leading to the arrest of the person(s) responsible for any crime.

The shooting is the latest in a rash of violent crimes that’s been plaguing the CSRA for the past month. While the shootings were mostly concentrated in Augusta at the start, some of the violence has moved across the Savannah River into South Carolina.

Two of the recent shootings in Aiken County have involved drivers:

TACKLING LOCAL CRIME:

Other deadly crimes in the CSRA since April 14 include:

  • On May 7, the body of Joseph McKinnon, 60, was found at 102 Tanglewood Drive in Trenton. Authorities determined he’d died of a heart attack after strangling and burying his girlfriend, Patricia Dent, 65, in the yard.
  • Shooting just before 7:30 p.m. on April 23 claimed the life of Rodriquez Dunn, 31, at the Olmstead Homes in the 2100 block of B Street in Augusta. Dunn suffered at least one gunshot wound and died at the scene.
  • On April 19, Brittany Dougherty was found slain outside a vacant home in the 1500 block of Conklin Lane. Her death was considered suspicious from the start, but within hours the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office ruled her death a homicide.
  • On April 18, Johnnie Coleman was found shot dead in the 1900 block of Old Savannah Road. Authorities released a photo of a car suspected to have been linked to that slaying. Kelvin Lewis, 33, has been arrested as a suspect in the murders of Coleman and Dougherty.
  • Jenefer Holt Herron, 52, of Augusta, died late April 18 after being shot during an argument outside the Circle K at 1739 Walton Way in Augusta. Suspect Yelena Buckner, 33, of Augusta, was later found and arrested on charges of murder and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime, deputies reported.
  • JaJuan Russell, 21, of Augusta, was fatally shot early April 17 in the 3700 block of Oslo Road in Augusta. Russell was taken to Augusta University Medical Center.
  • Sandersville police found the body of a man on April 16 inside a home on Gwendolyn Street while responding to a report of a domestic dispute at the address. Santavious Louis Roberts, 35, of Sandersville, was arrested.
  • Brandon Peebles, 24, of Girard, was shot around 10:45 p.m. on April 14 in the 2300 block of Prague Court. He was pronounced dead at 11:23 p.m.

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