Two female mental health patients drown while chained up in police van

Two female mental health patients drown while chained up in police van

The van was traveling west on Highway 76 into neighboring Marion County when floodwaters overcame the vehicle.

According to WBTW, two Horry County Sheriff's deputies were transporting two mental health patients to McLeod Behavioral Health in Darlington.

"It's a sad situation all around", he added on Thursday.

The deputies in the front of the van said they were able to climb on the roof and wait for a rescue but were unable to reach the women.

Neither woman has an arrest record in SC, according to documents obtained from the State Law Enforcement Division.

Thompson said he did not think the women were in restraints in the back of the van, noting that restraints are used for combative patients "and I understand they were not".

"Tonight's incident is a tragedy", said Horry County Sheriff Phillip Thompson, according to local reports.

The South Carolina Department of Corrections tweeted pictures on Monday of prisoners preparing to defend their facilities from flooding.

Yesterday afternoon, this news outlet was tracking a live webcam of the river sponsored by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) when we noticed the bridges spanning the Great Pee Dee were under siege from rising floodwaters ...

In a statement, the sheriff's office said the two deputies escaped from the cab and tried to get the women out of the back. They trusted the hospitals and the Sheriff Deputies with their lives and that trust was abused.

"We want those who are responsible to be held accountable", it reads in part.

South Carolina Law Enforcement Division Spokesman Thom Berry said recovery efforts are set for today - the van and the victims remain in the flood waters at the scene. "It's come up 2 feet since last night".

At the time of writing, the van is still in the water. Our deputies were driving the vehicle when it was swept away by floodwaters.

Hershberger said that her mother was diagnosed with schizophrenia three years ago and took medication for the condition; a new therapist who Green visited on September 18, determined she needed to be committed to a mental institution.

North Carolina's governor is pleading with thousands of Hurricane Florence evacuees to be patient and not return home just yet.

The incident took place in Marion County. Two deputies were rescued but the detainees died.

We are working hand-in-hand with the State Law Enforcement Division to cooperate in this investigation.

As I mentioned, we have as many questions, this is the very reason SLED and internal agencies are established.

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