Drowning victims in Horry sheriff van caught in flood waters are identified

Maricruz Casares
Setiembre 19, 2018

According to the sheriff's office, the two detainees were being transferred from Waccamaw Mental Health in Myrtle Beach and McLeod Loris Hospital in Loris to McLeod Behavioral Health in Darlington, S.C.

The deputies were transporting the women to a facility in SC were saved, ABC News reported.

The two women have not yet been identified.

Two female mental patients chained in the back of a county sheriff's van drowned when the vehicle in which they were traveling was overcome by floodwaters, police said.

The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division is investigating the incident.

"Tonight's incident is a tragedy", Thompson said in a statement. 'Just like you, we have questions we want answered'.

Justin Bamberg, a state lawmaker and lawyer who has represented the families of several people injured or killed by law enforcement officers, said Wednesday he's perplexed by the decision to transport anyone in such uncertain weather conditions.

Horry County Deputy Tom Fox told WPDE-TV that the victims were mental health patients being transported from one facility to another.

Richardson said the deputies and two patients began the trip that afternoon from a hospital near Conway, where tributaries of the Pee Dee River are overflowing their banks. According to some accounts, water swept the vehicle off the road.

More news: Hurricane Florence latest: Death toll RISES to 18, according to reports

The Little Pee Dee River reached major flood stage after Hurricane Florence battered the Carolinas over the weekend and is expected to crest at 16 feet on September 21, seven feet higher than flood stage.

Floodwaters in North Carolina were still quite high as of September 19. The two deaths will push Florence's toll across three states to almost 40 victims.

Cooper warned locals that the flooding isn't over yet.

Aides say President Donald Trump will visit North Carolina on Wednesday to see the damage.

"Right now, everybody is saying what a great job we are doing with Hurricane Florence - and they are 100% correct", he tweeted.

Authorities confirm two detainees drowned when a van was swept away in rising flood waters in SC.

The incident happened in the area of the Little Pee Dee River, which branches off from the Lumber River, in Mullins, South Carolina. He said the two deputies involved had been placed on administrative leave and he had launched an internal investigation. Despite persistent and ongoing efforts, floodwater rose rapidly and the deputies were unable to open the doors to reach the individuals inside the van.

Later, someone else reports, "We have the two deputies that are out of the van and are secure on the boat".

We are working hand-in-hand with the State Law Enforcement Division to cooperate in this investigation.

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