Family of wounded Berkeley Co. deputy appeals for help; $11K reward offered

VIDEO: Reward announced for info in deputy shooting
Jamie Rogers Wyatt, daughter of Berkeley Co. Deputy Will Rogers, appeals for help from the public. (Photo Source: Live 5)
Jamie Rogers Wyatt, daughter of Berkeley Co. Deputy Will Rogers, appeals for help from the public. (Photo Source: Live 5)
Sketch of the person of interest. (Source: SLED)
Sketch of the person of interest. (Source: SLED)

BERKELEY COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - A reward of $11,000 is being offered for information that leads to the arrest of the man who shot a Berkeley County Sheriff's deputy Thursday night.

The family of Berkeley County Sheriff's Lt. Will Rogers, along with officials from the sheriff's office, made the announcement Tuesday afternoon at MUSC, where Rogers is recovering.

Rogers' daughter, Jamie Rogers Wyatt, spoke on behalf of the family, thanking the law enforcement community, the media and the public for support they have received since the shooting.

"While I have said thank you many times, I must also say we still strongly need the public's help," Wyatt said. "The shooter ambushed our father. He shot our father in the back of the head. He left our father there to die," she said, pausing to choke back tears, "while victimizing another person by pointing a gun at them and taking their vehicle. I say this so the public knows exactly whom we are dealing with, and to ask again for help."

Wyatt called for the shooter to "do the right thing" by turning himself in. She also asked anyone who might know anything about the incident to call the number the Berkeley County Sheriff's Office set up, (843) 719-4424, and share the information they have.

"We ask this because when the shooter shot Lt. Rogers, he didn't just shoot a law enforcement officer," she said. "He shot a father. He shot a grandfather. He shot a Marine veteran. He shot a true public servant who has dedicated his entire life to serving and protecting all of us. If this were your son lying in critical care at MUSC, wouldn't you want someone to find the shooter? If this were your grandfather, wouldn't you want someone to come forward with information to help find the shooter?"

Wyatt, 25, joined by her brothers Hunter, 15, and twins Lucas and Nicholas, 19, also asked for continued prayers for their father and for all law enforcement officers who put their lives on the line. They all wore T-shirts that read, "Police Lives Matter," and featured the hashtag, #TheWillToSurvive.

The family did not release any new details on Rogers' condition. On Monday, Berkeley County Sheriff's Office spokesman Michael Mulè said Rogers was in critical but stable condition. Rogers had been taken off a ventilator, according to a spokesperson from MUSC. Officials say he is talking and is recognizing family members.

$11K reward offered, search for 'person of interest' continues

Authorities announced an $11,000 reward, funded by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, the Berkeley County Sheriff's Office and Crime Stoppers for information that leads to the arrest of the man who shot Rogers.

Deputies continue to search for a person of interest they want to question in the shooting, described as a black male in his 20s, 5'10" to 5'11" tall, weighing between 150 to 170 pounds and having a reddish tint in his hair towards the forehead area.

The shooting happened Thursday at around 10:30 p.m. at a gas station on Highway 52 at Cypress Gardens Road in Moncks Corner. Investigators say as Rogers was talking to a customer in the parking lot, a masked gunman came around a corner and shot Rogers from behind.

The county has a 24-hour information line set up to take calls from anyone who might know something about the shooting or might have seen the gunman. That number is (843) 719-4424. Crime Stoppers has a toll-free number: (888) CRIME-SC; and the ATF also has a toll-free number to receive tips: (888) 283-8477.

Berkeley County Interim Sheriff Butch Henerey said businesses wanting to contribute to the reward fund may do so by contacting Crime Stoppers and offering a donation designated specifically to the fund.

Rogers' daughter: 'He is a true public servant'

Rogers, a night shift supervisor, has been in law enforcement for more than 25 years and was a GOP candidate in the recent Berkeley County Sheriff election.

In his 25 years in law enforcement he's been a part of the South Carolina Highway Patrol, and a member of the Moncks Corner Police Department. He's also a Marine veteran.

A friend of the family says he is a devoted family man, a father of three daughters and two sons. He also has two grandchildren.

Former Berkeley County Sheriff Major Ricky Driggers is a long-time friend of Rogers. He said he's heartbroken over the news of Rogers.

Driggers described the veteran as one of the hardest working men in law enforcement he's ever known.

Driggers has spoken with members of the search effort and said they are sad and upset over what happened, but “they need to keep their heads in the game.”

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