‘It felt like an earthquake’: Family’s home destroyed after police chase

A family’s home was destroyed in the middle of the night after a car smashed into it during a police chase.
Published: Mar. 31, 2023 at 6:38 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

AIKEN, S.C. (WRDW/WAGT) - A family’s home was destroyed after a car smashed into it during a police chase.

All of it was caught on camera. After crashing into her home, the driver hopped out and ran away. Shortly after the car burst into flames making her home unlivable.

We spoke to the woman who says the fire department told her there was minor damage, but she says that’s not the case.

We could barely walk through her house without having to wear a mask. That’s how bad the smoke smell was. Her bedroom was destroyed. They say they’ve had so many issues on this road, and this police chase was not the first time either.

In the quiet of the night.

“It felt like an earthquake,” said Gwen Thomas.

The eyes and ears of Thomas’ house were rolling as a high-speed pursuit ended under her bedroom.

“My heart started pounding real fast. I thought I was going to have a heart attack,” said Thomas.

She’s lucky.

“It’s just scary because I usually keep my grandbaby, and we both sleep in that room,” she said.

Thomas is hard of hearing. It’s hard to hear high-pitched noises, like our phones, bells, and even sirens. Her bedroom went up in flames.

“I say my life was sparred,” she said.

But her room was not sparred. In February, it was a different month but the same story.

“They flipped over, and it was headed into the direction of my house,” she said.

But luckily for Terri Harmon, her neighbor, there was no cleanup needed. Both Harmon and Thomas say the newly paved road and warning bumps aren’t keeping drivers alert.

“We’ve had a lot of accidents down here,” she said.

So many, they both know the beat of the traffic.

Thomas said: “Every time someone is speeding over the railroad tracks you hear the blump blump every time.”

They hope something is done to ease thier piece of mind.

“Still at night, I’m tossing and turning and I have nightmares. I can’t keep doing this,” said Thomas.

Thomas told us that when she was a kid, they had a house fire and lost everything. It was hard to re-live something like this.