November 4, 2013

Sheriff: Miles shooting not a robbery

Former University of South Carolina running back Kenny Miles was not shot in a robbery attempt on Monday as reported initially, Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott said Tuesday.

Kenny Miles was not shot in a robbery attempt on Monday as the former University of South Carolina running back reported initially to authorities, Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott said Tuesday.

"That is not a true statement," Lott said at a noon news conference at department headquarters.

Authorities only know that Miles was shot in the left arm, Lott said. No charges have been filed.

Miles was found shot at about 1 p.m. in the doorway at 121 Centrum Drive in an office park near Broad River Road and Interstate 26 near Irmo, according to an incident report.

He "appeared to be very incoherent to his surroundings," the report said.

Miles told deputies he did not know who shot him in his car.

He said he was shot by a white man in is late 30s-early 40s with light grey hair, a blue long-sleeve button-down work shirt and khaki pants, the report said.

The shooter fled by foot into a wooded area, Miles told deputies, but police dogs could not find track because of "the victim not being able to pinpoint the location where the original shooting occurred."

Blood has been found at two locations -- the office park where Miles was found and a nearby church, Lott said after the news conference. A friend of Miles worked at the office park, the sheriff said.

Deputies got the revised story after speaking with Miles and through their investigation, Lott said. Miles told investigators that his watch and ring were stolen but that was not true, he said.

Lott said he does not know what led to Miles' shooting. Authorities are unsure if Miles gave an accurate description of his assailant, the sheriff said.

The news conference was to "let the community know we don't have an armed robber running around in the St. Andrews or Dutch Fork area that committed a robbery and shot Kenny Miles," said a clearly frustrated Lott.

Lott told reporters that he was "not real happy with the resources and time that we spent on this case chasing false leads. It wasted a lot of manpower. .. We're going to find out what happened."

Miles tweeted Tuesday morning: "So thankful for all the support and prayers sent my way. I'll be just fine people I promise, I'm blessed y'all have a great day. Love you all."

Efforts to reach Miles and his family were unsuccessful Tuesday.

Miles sustained what the university called a "soft tissue" injury. He was expected to be released from Palmetto Health Richland on Tuesday after a night of observation, but the school did not have an update Tuesday afternoon.

South Carolina head coach Steve Spurrier said Monday that team physician Dr. Jeff “Guy told (head athletic trainer) Clint Haggard that he should be OK and was shot in the forearm,” Spurrier said. “(But) anytime you get shot, it’s pretty dang serious.”

Miles had approached Spurrier last week about the possibility of being a graduate assistant with the team, and Spurrier said he would consider it next season.

“He has been a model student-athlete here,” Spurrier said.

Miles, a Lawrenceville, Ga., native living in Irmo, still works in the office of S.C. Attorney General Alan Wilson, spokesman Mark Powell said Tuesday.

Miles has worked since August as a support clerk in community outreach and youth mentoring. He also interned in the office for four months in early 2012.

Miles’ shooting led to an outpouring of support on social media. Martha Childress, the University of South Carolina freshman paralyzed by a stray bullet last month in Five Points, tweeted: “Y’all pray for Kenny Miles please. It’s time for things to change in the Columbia area.”

On the football field, Miles led USC in rushing in 2009 as a redshirt freshman with 117 carries for 626 yards. He played in all 13 games, starting seven.

Miles started six games as a senior in 2012 and was third on the team in rushing with 359 yards. He started the final four games of last season after star tailback Marcus Lattimore suffered a season-ending knee injury.

Miles finished his USC career with 1,342 yards rushing.

Staff writers Josh Kendall and Chris Winston contributed

Kenny Miles Incident report by thestate

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