HORRY COUNTY, SC (WBTW) – Bond has been denied for the man charged in the fatal vehicle collision that claimed the lives of two young North Carolina girls and shut down 17 Business Tuesday night near Pirateland Campground.
Cpl. Sonny Collins with the South Carolina Highway Patrol confirms Neil Joseph Dejean, 47, of Duson, LA, is charged with two counts of reckless homicide in connection to the car wreck. J. Reuben Long Detention Center records show Dejean is also charged with alcohol-open container.
Dejean had a bond hearing Thursday at 3 p.m. where the Horry County Solicitor’s Office argued Dejean is a flight risk because he is not from the area, it is believed that he has a failure to appear warrant in Okaloosa County, FL on a domestic violence charge, and recently reached a settlement in a $4.6 million lawsuit. Bond was denied and Dejean remains in J. Reuben Long Detention Center.
When appearing in court, Dejean represented himself but said he was attempting to get in contact with an attorney. Dejean claimed in court that his shoe got stuck underneath the accelerator. The Solicitor’s Office noted at the bond hearing , however, that Dejean admitted to driving in excess of 90 miles per hour. Dejean first asked about the condition of his car following the crash, according to the Solicitor’s Office.
Horry County Coroner Robert Edge confirms 11-year-old Dakota Shepherd of Timberlake, North Carolina, and her 9-year-old cousin, Skyler Emore, also of North Carolina, died on scene. News13 sister station, WNCN in Raleigh, NC, has received photos of the two young victims.
The South Carolina Highway Patrol website reports the crash occurred around 8 p.m. Highway patrol indicates the crash was just before Pirateland, located at 5401 S Kings Hwy.
SCHP said three vehicles were involved in the crash. According to troopers, the driver of a Dodge mini-van attempted to turn into a private driveway and was struck by a Mercedes car.
The mini-van then struck a parked vehicle in a parking lot. Three people in the mini-van and the driver of the Mercedes were taken to Grand Strand Regional Hospital with injuries.
South Carolina State Highway Patrol’s MAIT team is investigating the crash.