3 Lowcountry residents identified as victims in deadly Myrtle Beach shooting

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – Three people were shot and killed at the Bermuda Sands Motel on Ocean Boulevard late Saturday night, a police official confirmed.

Officers responded to a call of shots fired at the motel near First Avenue North at about 11 p.m., said Myrtle Beach Police Captain David Knipes. Police arrived to find four shooting victims. One person was transported to a nearby hospital, and the other three were pronounced dead at the scene.

Deputy Coroner Darris Fowler has identified the victims as Devonte Dantzler, 21, of Summerville, SC; Jamie Williams, 28, of Ladson, SC; and Sandy Gaddis Barnwell, 22, of Summerville, SC.  All three deaths were ruled as homicides.  The victims died of trauma to vital organs due to gun shots.

"You always try to prepare for the unexpected. We've had shooting incidents before," Capt. Knipes said.

A witness who did not wish to be identified said that the shooting started from "somebody fighting in the streets over something that happened in the streets. Somebody told somebody to move out the streets. Basically, that's what happened, that's what escalated from the beginning."

One block of Ocean Boulevard South was closed down while South Carolina Law Enforcement investigators and MBPD detectives were on scene, according to Raycom News Network reporter Jody Barr. Investigators were seen on the motel's second floor balcony. Officers spent several hours keeping people away from the crime scene.

One person was also shot multiple times at a separate incident Saturday on Ocean Boulevard near Sixth Avenue South, and was transported to the hospital, Capt. Knipes said. Police responded to this shooting at about 9 p.m. before receiving the call for the other shooting at Bermuda Sands.

"We certainly don't like to see any type of incident where somebody dies during this event, or any event that Myrtle Beach has. To have three people in one night is kind of a big thing."

Saturday marked the second day of the Atlantic Beach Bike Fest, a weekend rally for sports bike enthusiasts held this year from May 23 to May 26.

"You don't want Bike Week to be like that," the witness said. "You want Bike Week to be peaceful."

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