Man shot by deputies sues YC Sheriff’s Office

Dash Cam Video provided by Bamberg Legal

YORK COUNTY, S.C. (CN2 NEWS) – A York County man who says deputies fired at least 50 rounds in 2021 is now suing the Sheriff’s Office.

According to Trevor Mullinax’s legal team (Bamberg Legal) Mullinax was sitting in his truck on May 7th, 2021, having a severe emotional breakdown and was suicidal. According to attorneys, Mullinax’s truck was shot at 50 times and they say he was hit nine times, including once in the backside of the head.  Mullinax survived, but his attorney says he still hasn’t fully recovered from his injuries. The complaint alleges gross negligence, false imprisonment and malicious prosecution, among numerous other charges.

Attorneys say a family member called 911 to report his mental health emergency.  They add the family member provided the 911 dispatcher with cellphone numbers for both Mullinax and his mother. Mullinax’s team says there was a significant disconnect between the 911 dispatcher and deputies.  According to the complaint, the 911 dispatcher did not provide deputies with cellphone numbers given by the family member so that deputies could de-escalate the situation.  In addition, the complaint contends that the deputies, even though they knew they were going to a call involving a suicidal person, didn’t bring a mental health expert or anyone trained in handling such cases.

In dashcam video released by his attorney’s office shows when deputies arrived on scene, Mullinax’s mother was speaking to him through the driver’s side window of the truck.

In the video you can see deputies jump out of their vehicles, yell at him to put his hands up and shortly after begin firing. Mullinax’s mother is seen leaping away from the gunfire and heard screaming.

Attorneys say Mullinax had a hunting shotgun in his truck, but they say never pointed it.

Sheriff officials say Mullinax put the lives of the deputies in danger by pulling a shotgun.

The York County Sheriff’s Office says SLED investigated and all deputies involved were cleared of any wrongdoing by the 16th Circuit Solicitor’s Office.

The York County Sheriff’s Office released the following statement regarding the incident.

“As of the publication of this statement, the York County Sheriff’s Office has not been served with a lawsuit filed by Trevor Mullinax related to an officer involved shooting on May 7, 2021. The YCSO cannot respond to any specific allegations until we and outside council have had an opportunity to thoroughly review the document in its entirety.

This matter was investigated independently by the S.C. State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) and all of the deputies involved were cleared of any wrongdoing by the 16th Circuit Solicitor’s Office. The only individual that was found to have engaged in wrongdoing on May 7, 2021 was Trevor Mullinax and that was why he was charged criminally with point and presenting a firearm (Warrant No. 2021A4610100429) by SLED as a result of this incident.

“I tell all of my deputies that their goal is to serve the citizens of York County and then to go home safely to their families. Mr. Mullinax chose to put these men in danger by pulling a
shotgun. These deputies responded appropriately to the threat as they were trained to do. Had Mr. Mullinax made different choices that day, deputies would not have been required to use force,” said Sheriff Kevin Tolson. “Our ultimate goal is to ensure the safety of the public and our deputies. Regardless of the outcome of this lawsuit, we want to reassure our residents that we will continue to provide high quality and professional law enforcement service.”

Three of the four deputies involved in this incident are still serving the community as YCSO
deputies. One deputy voluntarily left the agency in April 2022 to take a job in the private sector. The Sheriff’s Office looks forward to vigorously defending against these allegations in the appropriate legal forum.”

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