OCONEE COUNTY, S.C. (WSPA) – Oconee County Sheriff Mike Crenshaw said the deputy who was shot in the officer-involved shooting Thursday afternoon is in stable but critical condition.

27-year-old Corporal Lucas Watts is currently assigned to the Pro-Active Community Enforcement Team and serves in the Marine Unit for Oconee County. He previously served almost two and a half years with the Anderson County Sheriff’s Office.

Sheriff Crenshaw said that the Oconee County Sheriff’s Office will not release any further
information regarding the shooting incident as the ongoing investigation is being conducted by
the Greenville County Sheriff’s Office.

The Sheriff said this all started from a traffic stop on South Highway 11, Thursday afternoon, which ended in Corporal Watts being shot.

“He was transported, there was a short pursuit after our deputy was shot, which other deputies encountered the suspect, and the suspect was shot,” said Crenshaw.

Michael Ferguson said he saw the Deputy get shot.

“One of the officers took off after the guy, the guy started shooting at the officer, like an automatic rifle or something, officers shot at him and he shot the officer,” he said.

He said gunshots started coming through the woods and into their front yard, so they started firing back.

“We didn’t know what was going on, then, all of a sudden the fire stopped, and we seen and heard ambulance sound, police and stuff and that’s when we stopped firing completely. Then, we seen the guy running through the woods,” said Ferguson.  “It was a one in a million occurrence, people know not to come on this property.”

The suspect’s condition is unknown, but officials said the suspect is alive. We do not yet know their name.

Sheriff Crenshaw released the following statement:

“On behalf of the men and women of the Oconee County Sheriff’s Office, I would like to thank
everyone who has prayed for Lucas, his family, our deputies and all law enforcement at this
time. We have been truly moved by the outpouring of support… We ask for continued prayers for Lucas and his family in the days and weeks ahead.”