An autopsy performed on the Clarendon County investigator who died in a car crash shows he suffered a heart attack and died from blunt force trauma after hitting a tree.
Clarendon County Coroner Hayes Samuels Jr. said results from an autopsy conducted by the Medical University of South Carolina shows Holmes Smith, 45, of Sumter, died from blunt force trauma to the torso and head. Samuels also said the autopsy revealed that Smith suffered from a heart attack.
Lance Cpl. David Jones, a South Carolina Highway Patrol spokesman, said Smith drove off U.S. 521 and struck a tree just before 2:30 p.m.
Jones said accident investigators could not determine if Smith was wearing a seat belt during the accident because witnesses and emergency response teams had removed him from the vehicle. But, Jones said airbags did deploy when Smith hit the tree.
According to Clarendon County Sheriff’s Department officials, Smith was returning to Clarendon County after meeting with South Carolina Law Enforcement Division special agents as a part of an auto theft investigation.
Sheriff Randy Garrett said Smith had served with the sheriff’s department for 19 years. He is survived by his wife and five children.