SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA)–A group of Spartanburg Water employees were working on a sewer line in Cleveland Park on Thursday when the shooter approached them and asked them questions, a generally normal occurrence for utility workers, until he started shooting.
“They answered him and before they knew it he had reached in and pulled out a gun and just started shooting,” Spartanburg Water communications manager Jennifer Candler said.
The shots hit two of the workers.
“There was no warning, there was no provocation, just seemed very random,” Candler said.
The rest of the group leaned on their training to survive.
“We have active shooter training for all of our employees, so the first instinct is to run. Run, hide, fight. So that’s what they did, they ran,” Candler said.
One of the workers even jumped into the open ground for safety.
“It’s a very scary experience. One I’m sure they never anticipated happening,” Candler said.
Police say the shooter then went back to his nearby home.
“As soon as the suspect in question left the scene and they determined it was safe they went back to tend to their two team members,” Candler said.
A standoff then occurred, which resulted in injuries for a Spartanburg County deputy and an adult woman. A Charter employee was found dead inside the home.
Charter releasing a statement saying:
“We are devastated by the loss of our co-worker and our thoughts are with his family and friends at this difficult time.”
“Another fellow utility worker. We want the community to know we’ll come together and support them as well,” Candler said.
Candler says the outpouring of support for the victims of this tragedy has been overwhelming.
“Spartanburg is a very close knit community and we really saw that yesterday,” she said.
Spartanburg Water is offering mental health support to all of their employees and the families of those involved.