MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster spent the morning with Myrtle Beach city leaders Thursday to discuss policing options following five shootings in three days.
Gov. McMaster, who was planning to be in the Grand Strand Thursday for other scheduled events, is adding the meeting to his schedule, says Brian Symmes, a spokesman for the governor.
Symmes confirms the governor spoke with SLED Chief Mark Keel Monday night to set the meeting with Myrtle Beach law enforcement and city leaders. Keel will also attend the meeting.
“This meeting is borne out of some concern (the governor) has over the rash of violence that’s occurred over the past few days,” Symmes confirms, adding that the meeting was set up “to ensure the safe, family-friendly environment of Myrtle Beach and the Grand Strand is maintained.”
The meeting is in an effort of “making sure all South Carolinians and South Carolina visitors are safe and remain safe,” Symmes says. The spokesperson adds state resources could be made available “if that’s the best course of action.”
Symmes says Thursday’s meeting with SLED Chief Mark Keel and Myrtle Beach law enforcement officials will be private, but the governor will make himself available for questions from the media after the meeting concludes.
Five shootings were reported over a three day period, beginning Saturday afternoon with the first shooting at Coastal Grand Mall around 4:26 p.m. Minutes later, the second shooting was reported at the Crown Reef Motel.
The third shooting occurred Sunday morning just after midnight, at 12:25 a.m. on 5th Avenue North and Ocean Boulevard, injuring seven people. A fourth shooting happened Sunday night at 9:05 p.m. near the Dunes Village Resort, at 5200 North Ocean Blvd.
The fifth shooting was reported about 24 hours later at 405 27th Avenue North. The reported victim is not cooperating with the investigation and has refused medical treatment, according to Lt. Joey Crosby with Myrtle Beach Police.
Myrtle Beach City Council held a special meeting at 2 p.m. Tuesday where nearly 300 people from the community showed to ask questions and voice concerns on the recent violence. The meeting was held at the Ted Collins building on North Oak St.