The FBI is investigating a veteran accused of leading deputies on a chase. Aiken County deputies say a heavy duty Humvee, stolen from Fort Gordon, crossed the South Carolina state line and weaved on and off Interstate 20 for miles. Calls about the Humvee came in around Mile Marker 11. Investigators tell News 12 the military vehicle was reportedly hitting trees, jumping curbs, and nearly collided with a deputy. The chase finally ended around Mile Marker 29.
Tammy Hiers was outside her home, prepping for a family party. She says she stopped when she heard the chaos just past her backyard. “We were grilling, and we heard sirens coming down the interstate, we thought. But we looked up and it was on Frontage Road across from the interstate,” Hiers said.
She says she looked up to see a Humvee, followed by patrol cars. “Every few seconds it seemed like, there was another group and another group. You know, it seemed like about thirty,” she said.
About five miles up the road, patrol cars caught up with their target. The Aiken County Sheriff’s Office says the suspect stole the military vehicle from Barton Field at Fort Gordon, where it was on display. Deputies say the suspect was ex-military. “It’s just a crazy time now, so we just didn’t know what was going on. We had no idea that they weren’t all together,” Hiers said.
The first call came to dispatch around Mile Marker 11. The chase finally ended about twenty minutes later after deputies say the car swerved on and off the road, left the interstate on Exit 18, and later, cut through the wood line. When the driver got back on the Interstate, deputies say they were able to stop him. Investigators say the twelve thousand pound Humvee nearly collided head on with a patrol car.
Tammy says the sight and the story is one she can’t forget. “Well, you think, do you need to go inside? Is it something really bad? Do you just forget about it? Because they kept coming and coming and coming,” she said.
Troops from Fort Gordon crossed the river to pick up the Humvee. They say it was locked from the outside while on display.
The suspect was taken to Aiken Regional with a medical condition, but they say he was not injured in the chase. His name has not been released.