Richland County deputy Chris Bagby had to think fast when gunshots were fired at him late Saturday.
The 35-year-old deputy was the first to respond to a domestic disturbance on Camrose Court in the northeast part of the county.
The suspect, 23-year-old Arkeem Breeland, of Columbia, was trying to get into his parents’ home at about 11:30 p.m. Saturday, Sheriff Leon Lott said.
When Bagby arrived, Breeland fired at least seven shots at him, according to the sheriff. Bagby did not return fire, but got out of the way and called for help, because it wasn’t a safe situation in which to fire his gun, the deputy said.
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“There were way too many houses and way too many residents just to be out there outlawing and cowboying up,” Bagby said.
Bagby is no stranger to gunfire. He started his law enforcement career in 2005 in Gulf Shores, Ala., where he says he was shot at in the line of duty. He was a sniper in the Marine Corps from 1999 to 2003, where he served in Iraq and Afghanistan.
“You never get used to being shot at,” Bagby said.
Deputies caught Breeland near the home after he fled, according to the sheriff’s department. He was taken to Palmetto Health Richland and treated for hypothermia and an unspecified pre-existing health condition.
Breeland was out on probation when the incident occurred, according to the sheriff’s department. He has been charged with attempted murder, possession of a firearm during a violent crime and unlawful carry of a firearm. He was confined in the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center.