Witness provides details of shooting involving an officer of Aiken that left the man hospitalized
May 16 – It was supposed to be a late night snack run for Charles Emmanuel.
After waking up to get ice cream at McDonald’s, Emmanuel didn’t expect a shooting.
“I’m still shocked to tell you the truth when I think about it,” he said. “I’m getting a little tired of it.”
Emmanuel still tries to remember seeing a shooting involving officers from the Aiken Department of Public Safety that occurred early Tuesday morning in Aiken.
Since the incident, police identified 30-year-old Richard Dale McCarty of North Augusta as a suspect after he deliberately rammed his vehicle into an officer’s vehicle on Whiskey Road, according to an incident report from the Aiken Department of Public Safety.
The incident began around 1:45 a.m. when McCarty Sgt. Marquis Davis was sitting in his patrol car at a gas station at the intersection of Whiskey and Pine Log Roads, according to a press release from SLED.
After a brief conversation between McCarty and Davis, McCarty got into his vehicle and rammed Davis’s vehicle, rendering both vehicles useless on Whiskey Road, according to the incident report.
McCarty got out of the passenger-side window of his vehicle and pursued Davis with a knife, the release said.
Davis tried to break away from McCarty, who continued to pursue him.
Two officers arrived at the scene to assist Davis and fired at McCarty, the report said. The suspect was hit several times.
McCarty was taken to hospital for treatment for several non-life-threatening injuries and no officers were injured, SLED said in a press release.
‘I was just getting an ice cream’
Emmanuel recalls going through the drive-thru and trying to turn onto Whiskey Road, but as he pulled to the right, he saw a police car and another vehicle parked in front of a petrol station. He then saw the officer walk quickly to his car before seeing a white man in a truck with a furious look on his face.
“He (McCarty) jumped in his truck and hit the accelerator and shot up the road and hit the cop as hard as he could and drove him across the road into the tree in front of Regions Bank,” he said.
Emmanuel said he heard the truck crash into the tree and the officer asked if McCarty was okay.
He said he then saw Davis coming to the intersection with McCarty following him.
“The officer had this fearful look in his eyes, and when I look back I could see that because it was fear and he was running for his life,” he said. “The man was catching up to him.”
Emmanuel then saw two other police cars heading down Whiskey Road from the direction of Lowe’s. He said one officer ran toward McCarty and Davis, while other officers ran to the right side of the bank before hearing about 20 to 30 gunshots.
“I said, ‘Oh my God, someone got mixed up here and hopefully the dude didn’t shoot the cop,'” he said.
“It was the last thing I expected to see,” he said.
Lieutenant Jennifer Hayes of the Aiken Department of Public declined to comment or provide the names of the officers involved in the shooting.
SLED has charged McCarty with attempted murder and possession of weapons during a violent crime.
A warrant stated that McCarty had committed the crime of assault/attempted murder by premeditating an ADPS officer by ramming the officer’s vehicle with his car and using a large knife in an overhand grip on run down the victim in an attempt to kill the officer.
Another warrant stated that McCarty knowingly possessed and displayed a firearm or knife while committing a violent crime, attempted murder.
The incident is the 12th officer involved in shooting in South Carolina for 2023 and the first officer involved in shooting for Aiken Department of Public Safety.