GREENVILLE — A teen fired the only shots during a chase last month that ended with the death of a South Carolina police officer and the suicide of the suspect, authorities said.
The findings of the State Law Enforcement Division investigation should end any suggestion that officer Allen Jacobs was not shot by 17-year-old Deontea Mackey or that police killed Mackey instead of taking him into custody, Greenville Police Chief Ken Miller said at a news conference Monday.
“This incident is a murder-suicide,” Miller said.
Prosecutor Walt Wilkins reviewed the State Law Enforcement Division report finished Friday independently of Miller and said he came to the same conclusion.
The incident began March 18 as Jacobs and his partner tried to talk to Mackey after receiving information the teen might have a gun illegally. Mackey was a self-professed gang member and had just gotten out of prison, while Jacobs had dealt with Mackey before, Miller said.
The teen started to run, and Jacobs chased him. As the officer rounded the corner of a Greenville home, about 100 miles northwest of Columbia, Mackey fired seven shots. Four of them hit Jacobs, including in the head and upper chest, Miller said.
Jacobs’ gun never was pulled from his holster, the chief said.
Other officers chased Mackey for nearly a mile over 10 minutes before cornering him on a trail. Mackey called his mother on his cellphone, Miller said.
“He told her he shot a cop, it was bad and he was going to kill himself,” the chief said.
All the bullets from the officers’ guns involved in chasing Mackey were accounted for, Miller said.
Mackey got the gun from a second teen who stole it from his grandfather, Wilkins said. Prosecutors are seeking felony charges against that teen.
Jacobs had been on the Greenville force for four years. The 28-year-old was an Iraq war veteran and was married with two children with a third baby on the way.
“It’s been very painful for the men and women of the Greenville Police Department,” Miller said. “But it has been very heartwarming to see the community come out in support of officer Jacobs’ family and them.”