SC police officer killed in shootout with suspect was a volunteer firefighter
Fallen Myrtle Beach Police Officer Jacob Hancher served for five years as a Horry County volunteer firefighter based out of Carolina Bays Station 45
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. — A police officer in Myrtle Beach was killed and another officer was wounded in a shootout over the weekend with a man suspected of domestic violence, according to reports.
The slain officer was identified as Jacob Hancher, who was a volunteer firefighter and had been on his patrol for less than a year, said Myrtle Beach Police Chief Amy Prock. He was the first Myrtle Beach officer killed while on duty since 2002, The Associated Press reported.
“He was a dedicated public servant who upheld his oath to protect this community and made the ultimate sacrifice,” Prock said.
The officer who was wounded is hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries and is expected to survive, The Associated Press reported, citing the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division.
The suspected gunman was found dead, although authorities have not revealed his name nor the circumstances of his demise.
Witnesses first reported gunfire in the neighborhood about 10 p.m. Saturday, when the officers were dispatched.
Police announced on social media that an officer-involved shooting occurred around that time.
Spectators gathered on the street and nearby hotel balconies as dozens of emergency vehicles arrived on the scene, the AP reported. Some said they came outside when they heard the gunfire.
One woman in the crowd said she observed an injured officer limping away and later being picked up by an ambulance, however, there were no reports of additional victims.
“I wanted to go over and help him,” resident Daisey Stockbauer said.
Some community members gathered for a prayer vigil outside police headquarters Sunday afternoon, local news outlets reported, while others left memorials at the site of the shooting.
Hancher is survived by his mother, father, stepmother, sister and step-siblings, according to a nonprofit group raising money for his family.
Republican U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham and his November challenger, Democrat Jaime Harrison, both expressed condolences, the AP reported.
Myrtle Beach Mayor Brenda Bethune asked on social media for prayers for the police department.
“They need our community to show them love, support and strength,” she said.
©2020 The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (Atlanta, Ga.)