SC man dies after shooting at deputies from behind barricade, officials say

Tracy Glantz/

One person died Sunday following a standoff with law enforcement officers where shots were fired, the Aiken County Sheriff’s Office said.

Christopher H. Whittle, a 49-year-old Aiken resident, was fatally shot by a deputy, Aiken County Coroner Darryl Ables said Sunday.

The shooting happened at a residence in the 300 block of Hamelin Road in Aiken, the sheriff’s office said in a news release. That’s not far from Exit 22 on Interstate 20.

At about 2:45 a.m., deputies responded to the residence after being told about a person with a gun, later identified as Whittle, was threatening neighbors, according to the release. There was no word about why Whittle was threatening neighbors.

When they arrived, deputies encountered Whittle, who was behind a barricade in the residence, the sheriff’s office said. Whittle fired multiple shots, according to the release.

Both SWAT teams and negotiators then responded to the scene, where Whittle died after a deputy returned fire, officials said.

The sheriff’s office deferred all questions about what it called an “officer involved shooting” to the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division, which it requested to lead the investigation.

A spokesperson for SLED said the law enforcement agency is investigating the shooting but declined to provide further details.

The coroner’s office is investigating the death along with SLED, according to the release.

No deputies were hurt in the shooting, the sheriff’s office said. No other injuries were reported.

Although Ables said Whittle died from a gunshot wound, he said an autopsy would be performed in Newberry on Tuesday.