Charleston County deputy faulted, not ticketed in West Ashley crash

Deputy Sheriff crashes into woman in west ashley at the intersection of Paul Cantrell and Magwood Dr.( Leroy Burnell/postandcourier.com/5/19/2013 ) Buy this photo

A Charleston County Sheriff’s Office deputy was determined to be a contributing factor in a crash Sunday afternoon in West Ashley, a spokeswoman for the S.C. Highway Patrol said this morning.

Deputy William Fawcett slowed for a red light at the intersection of Paul Cantrell Boulevard and Magwood Drive while he was responding to a traffic crash with injuries. But before he made it through, a Honda sport-utility vehicle struck the passenger side of his marked cruiser.

He was labeled as the sole reason that the crash occurred, Trooper Bridget Wyant said.

But Fawcett will not be ticketed. Wyant said she could not say if that was because he had been acting in an official capacity at the time and was responding to a call with lights and a siren.

“You’re supposed to yield to a law enforcement vehicle,” she said. “But if you’re responding to a call, you also have to use due care and caution coming through an intersection.”

Both Fawcett and the driver of the Honda, 58-year-old Lucia Crull, were hurt. They were treated at a hospital and later released.

Sheriff’s Maj. Mike Stanley also said this morning that Fawcett was headed to an accident at the time. Stanley did not immediately say where that crash had been reported.

Obtained Tuesday after The Post and Courier filed a Freedom of Information Act request, a video from Fawcett’s cruiser first shows his car northbound on Savage Road, then turning left at Henry Tecklenburg Drive. The video does not include a speedometer reading.

The deputy encounters little traffic in his own lane. His siren is heard.

Near a Lowe’s Home Improvement store, a car turns toward his travel lane, but it stops short. Fawcett makes a remark, but his words are difficult to discern.

At Paul Cantrell Boulevard, Fawcett’s cruiser approaches the intersection with no traffic in the lane to go straight. The cruiser nearly stops.

Fawcett steps on the gas, and the engine growls, but his cruiser is hit before making it to Magwood Drive. Crull’s SUV, which was westbound on Paul Cantrell Boulevard, is never visible.

Screeching tires and shattering glass are heard as the video frame turns sideways, then goes dark.

Reach Andrew Knapp at 937-5414 or twitter.com/offlede.

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