A S.C. Highway Patrol trooper fired his weapon during a high-speed car chase Wednesday but no one was injured.
After a two-hour-long search, a 22-year-old man was arrested and charged in connection with that chase. It led from Interstate 20 onto Alpine Road and into a nearby neighborhood, where, the patrol said, the suspect abandoned his car and fled on foot in the parking lot of the Magnolia Manor Nursing Home Facility.
Michael Tyrell Lee Jr., of Columbia, was taken into custody after Wednesday’s manhunt.
The S.C. Highway Patrol released information about the chase saying one of its troopers had discharged his weapon during the pursuit but no one was injured.
The release — which the patrol said it was making “in the interest of transparency and keeping the public informed” — also noted the suspect is black and the trooper is Hispanic.
The incident follows the shooting of an unarmed black man by a white state trooper during a traffic stop last year in Richland County.
The trooper involved in that shooting, Lance Cpl. S.M. Groubert, was fired and faces criminal charges. That shooting, caught on Groubert’s dash-cam video, took on national significance in the wake of the fatal shooting a month earlier of unarmed teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo.
In Wednesday’s incident, the unnamed trooper tried to stop a 2013 Toyota Camry on I-20 after it was clocked going 80 miles per hour in a 60-mph zone, the Highway Patrol said. Instead, the driver left I-20 at Alpine Road and drove into a neighborhood “crossing the center line multiple times.”
After the suspect fled his leased car at the nursing home, SLED and Richland County Sheriff’s Department deputies joined the search.
Lee was arrested two hours later. He has been charged with failure to stop for a blue light, speeding and driving under suspension.