CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - A Charleston police officer overheard the man who police say killed an 11-year-old Danish girl in downtown Charleston Monday night telling his father over the phone that he got high and killed someone, according to supplemental reports released Friday.
Jeffrey Wakefield, 30, was speaking with his father on the phone while he was in a patrol car when the officer said he heard Wakefield say it, the report stated. Wakefield told officers on-scene something happened with the accelerator in his car and theorized his flip-flop might have gotten stuck on the gas pedal, according to the supplemental reports.
Wakefield claimed he had been out to eat with a friend from middle school who was in town at a restaurant he couldn't remember the name of. He claimed he had two non-alcoholic Becks beers at the restaurant because he had been sober for two years, the report stated. He then said he walked to two other bars with his friend where he had two more non-alcoholic beers before driving his friend back to a parking garage, according to the report.
He then claimed he was on the phone with his sobriety sponsor and hung up after the initial hit and run accident and didn't remember hitting the girl, according to the incident report.
The officer in the incident report noted Wakefield's eyes were red, pink and glassy with small pupils and conducted a field sobriety test on Wakefield before placing him under arrest. The officer also noted Wakefield was restarting his story multiple times and couldn't describe them clearly, the report stated.
Selma Akguel, of Middelfart, Denmark, was later identified as the victim struck by Wakefield's SUV which sped through the intersection of Calhoun Drive at Rutledge Avenue before going up onto the sidewalk and killing her, Charleston Police Chief Luther Reynolds said. A judge gave Wakefield bond Tuesday afternoon at $50,000 for the reckless homicide charge but denied bond on the felony DUI charge,
Reynolds expressed his outrage at a Tuesday news conference for what he called "the tragic and senseless loss of life."
Mayor John Tecklenburg said at the news conference that every two minutes in the United States, someone is injured because of a driver who is impaired.
"Folks, we've got to put a stop to this, and if you see something, you've got to say something," Tecklenburg said, urging people to speak up if they know of anyone who is about to drive impaired, even if that person is a friend or family member. "Get 'em off of the road, save our children."