911 audio released of deputy-involved shooting on James Island

Neighbors marching for man killed by deputies
Published: Oct. 13, 2013 at 4:40 AM EDT|Updated: Oct. 15, 2013 at 11:36 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn
Memorial for Derryl Drayton
Memorial for Derryl Drayton

JAMES ISLAND, SC (WCSC) - Authorities have released 911 audio tapes the night investigators say deputies tased a man twice before shooting him on James Island Saturday night.

The 911 audio starts with the sister of 51-year-old Derryl Drayton reporting to authorities that her brother was causing a disturbance at her home on Greenhill Road. The audio continues later with deputies reporting that they have made contact Drayton on Seaside Lane, where the Charleston County Sheriff's Office says he was shot by deputies after Drayton stabbed a deputy.

Bruce Hancock a police defense instructor at the South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy said the situation during a domestic disturbance case can change quickly. He teaches officers in training how to handle disturbances such as this case.

Hancock said, "We call it C.D.V., criminal domestic violence which is not a good thing because normally when we get there is multiple family members involved and officers have to be very careful."

Dash camera video of the incident was also released on Monday, the same day that the sheriff's office held a press conference discussing the fatal deputy involved shooting.

Authorities said neighbors had tried to convince Drayton to go home Saturday night, moments before the suspect stabbed a deputy with what appeared to be a six to seven inch long kitchen knife, according to the sheriff's office.

Sheriff Al Cannon says Drayton was then shot a combined seven times by two deputies. According to the coroner's office, Drayton died from multiple gunshot wounds.

The sheriff told reporters Monday that Drayton made no attempts to surrender, and that although he did not know what was going on with the suspect, "in any event, he did not comply with officers."

Authorities say the incident started at 10:20 p.m. when deputies responded to a home on Greenhill Road for a domestic disturbance between Drayton and his sister. When deputies arrived, Drayton's sister said her brother had threatened her, and left the area.

Deputies say they searched the area, and shortly thereafter located Drayton in the area of Seaside Lane and Greenhill Road. A sheriff's office report states Drayton resisted commands and began swinging at the deputies, then took off running again.

Investigators say deputies lost sight of him until he was located again on Seaside Lane. According to the sheriff's office, Drayton was armed with a knife and continued to exhibit "aggressive behavior" towards the deputies, and threatened to harm himself while raising the knife.

Deputies say they tased Drayton twice, which was ineffective. Afterward authorities say Drayton walked away. A sheriff's office report states, Drayton then stabbed one of the deputies, striking him in the knee.

The sheriff's office says two deputies then fired shots, striking Drayton. Deputies then began CPR and resuscitation on Drayton until EMS arrived at 11:01 p.m. where Drayton was declared deceased.

Hancock says a deadly force attack would be any type of threat that will cause great bodily harm or death to the officer or to a bystander.

"So in this case you have individual with a knife, so definitely we would consider that to be deadly force with that type of assault to an officer," said Hancock, "Action is always faster than reaction, so we're a lot of times already behind the eight ball because again we're responding toward what they're doing toward us."

Those who knew Drayton are having a hard time trying to make sense of what happened.

Peggy Washington a friend of Drayton said, "Derryl is not a person that traveled with knives, guns or anything like that. Not Derryl. All he wanted to do was play an organ and sing, but I've never known him to be a threat to his family."

Neighbors say they have many questions and are hoping for answers.

"I feel that if you tase a person, why shoot him more than one time," said Sarah Ladson, a friend of Drayton's.

Washington said, "They certainly shouldn't have shot him so many times as such and took his life.

Washington says Drayton was a religious man playing a lot of time in the church.

Allen Alston, another a friend of Drayton said, "We are going to miss him, I know that. God knows best but I hope they can find out the truth about really what happened to him."

SLED is now investigating the shooting. Per protocol, the two deputies involved have been placed on administrative leave.

Copyright WCSC 2013. All rights reserved.