INDIAN LAND, S.C. — Two people from Charlotte are facing charges in connection with a carjacking that occurred in Indian Land over the weekend.
On Saturday, March 14 around 3:45 a.m., deputies with the Lancaster County Sheriff’s Office were called to the 7-Eleven at 9759 Charlotte Highway to investigate a robbery that occurred in the parking lot of the store.
A 47-year-old female and a 45-year-old male went to the store in the lady’s white 2008 Lexus sport utility vehicle. The man went inside the store and returned to the passenger seat of the Lexus parked in front of the store. Two people – 18-year-old Zhanelah Mykel Brown and a 16-year-old juvenile – came from behind the store and approached the Lexus. They were wearing dark clothing and masks, and each appeared to be armed with a handgun. They ordered the couple out of the Lexus and drove off in it toward York County on Highway 160. The reporter provided a description of the Lexus.
Deputies responding to the call spotted the Lexus on Highway 160 and pursued it toward Fort Mill. Other deputies and a criminal investigator responded to the store.
The Fort Mill Police Department and the York County Sheriff’s Office were notified and sent officers to the area. Once in Fort Mill, the driver of the Lexus lost control and struck the sign for St. John United Methodist Church and then a tree on the property of Bank of America at the intersection of Highway 160 and Spring Street, where the Lexus came to rest.
Brown and the juvenile fled the scene on foot. Fort Mill officers and York County deputies, including a York County K-9 tracking team, searched for the pair. A helicopter from the South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) equipped with Forward Looking Infrared (FLIR) technology also searched. Brown and the juvenile separated but both made contact with residents while attempting to get transportation out of the area. Citizens reported these efforts, and officers located and detained each of them later Saturday morning.
Neither Brown nor the juvenile suffered significant injuries during the crash, but the Lexus was heavily damaged. It was towed to the Lancaster County Sheriff’s Office and was processed by a crime scene investigator. Evidence linking Brown and the juvenile to the Lexus was discovered in the car, and additional evidence was recovered in York County during the search for the two.
Brown was transported to the Lancaster County Detention Center where she was charged with carjacking, grand Larceny over $10,000 and possession of a firearm during the commission of a violent crime. Bond was denied Sunday.
The juvenile was transported to the South Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice Detention Center in Columbia and will appear before a Lancaster County Family Court judge at a later time. Because he is a juvenile, his identity will not be released.
“I am sure this was a terrifying event for the couple in their car in the 7-Eleven parking lot,” Sheriff Barry Faile said. “Fortunately, it was reported immediately and we got a good description of the Lexus. Our deputies got into the area quickly, spotted the car, and were able to stay with it into Fort Mill. We received tremendous help from the Fort Mill Police Department, the York County Sheriff’s Office and SLED, and the heat brought to bear on these two young people during the search resulted in their capture pretty quickly.”
Anyone with information about this or any other case should call 911 or the Lancaster County Sheriff’s Office at 803-283-3388.