West Columbia, SC (Paul Kirby) – A state helicopter that was assisting the West Columbia Police Department and Lexington County deputies in West Columbia drew quite a bit of attention Thursday afternoon as it circled several areas close to Platt Springs Road. The presence of many law enforcement officers in the area also added to the concern of residents that were wondering what was happening. This was most noticeable in an area close to the US Post Office and along side streets that ran parallel to Platt Springs.
According to Assistant Chief Scott Morrison of the West Columbia Police Department, officers had served a number of warrants after an investigation at several locations in the city earlier in the day. Although many of the suspects they were looking for were taken into custody quickly, they were simply trying to apprehend some of the suspects who had fled during that process. Morrison said that the helicopter was a great tool to provide officers a bird’s eye view of the area. There are many small businesses and tight neighborhoods in those areas, and they provided great hiding places for people who are trying to avoid arrest. Morrison said he wanted to assure the public that none of the suspects were wanted on warrants for violence and all were thought to be unarmed and simply running to avoid apprehension. He also said they didn’t believe there was any imminent danger to the public at all.