One of the people shot during a September shootout in the Vista is paralyzed. Another has “severe” facial injuries and brain damage. And another may walk with a limp for the rest of her life, according to information revealed at a Tuesday hearing.
New details about injuries suffered in the violence that rocked the Columbia nightlife district in the early hours of Sept. 16 emerged during a bond hearing for Jenorris Lartman, who faces seven counts of attempted murder and two weapons charges in the shooting that injured nine people, including Lartman.
State Rep. Leon Howard, D-Richland, attended the hearing with his niece, Kristie Logan, who was among the injured.
“When all the hype is over and the press is gone, these victims' lives have been altered indefinitely,” Howard told the court. “(Logan) can't work, she can't care for her daughter. And she's very fearful of this incident.”
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A victim advocate said during the hearing that one of the people shot is paralyzed, though she did not specify the extent of the paralysis or identify him. Another victim has “severe” damage to her face and parts of her brain, and has trouble eating, she said.
A Columbia Police Department spokeswoman declined to specify each victim’s injuries, citing medical privacy laws.
Logan, 26, previously told reporters she was shot in the leg, the bullet shattering her right knee. A friend who was with her at the time, Monica Reaves, was shot in the face.
Both were in court for Tuesday’s hearing but declined to speak with reporters.
Logan said previously that they went out in the Vista the night of Sept. 15 to celebrate a friend’s birthday. They had just left the Empire Supper Club, at the corner of Park and Lady streets, when the gunfire erupted, she said.
Police have said John Earl Bates Jr. rolled down the window of a dark-colored Ford Mustang as the car left a parking lot on Park Street between the Empire Club and Art Bar, shooting at Maleik Houseal and Houseal’s brother. Houseal returned fire, telling police he fired in self defense.
Six of the victims were injured on the 1200 block of Park Street, according to warrants. A seventh victim, Kentucky resident Denise Massey, was in town for the USC-Kentucky football game that weekend, and was shot while standing outside the Oyster Bar on the 1100 block of Park Street.
A bullet hit Massey in the face, shattered some bone and exited the back of her neck without damaging her spinal cord, and her fiancee has posted regular updates on her condition to Facebook.
Logan, who has a 5-year-old daughter, still uses crutches to get around.
“She may have a limp for the rest of her life,” Howard said. “She may suffer some emotional trauma as it relates to this incident. She may be afraid to go to public events, football games, other events we take for granted that we go to all the time.”
Lartman also was shot and is still receiving treatment, according to his attorney, Nathaniel Roberson. He appeared in bond court Tuesday wearing green hospital scrubs; a plastic medical pouch attached to his waist collected fluid.
Lartman’s criminal record includes convictions for assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature, strong-arm robbery and discharging a firearm into a dwelling, all of which concerned Municipal Judge Susan Porter.
“Based on that, based on the facts surrounding this, I find that you are a danger to our community,” Porter said to Lartman before denying bond on the attempted murder charges. She set bond on the weapon charges at $50,000 each.
At least one victim, who lives in Newberry County, was fearful of Lartman getting out of jail on bond, Columbia Police investigator Wayne Montgomery said during the hearing.
“She feels afraid for her safety,” Montgomery said. “That one, in particular, was afraid to even come (to the hearing).”