Manhunt on for accused gunman wanted in Lexington County shooting, SC sheriff says

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One man is in custody and a manhunt is underway for another who is wanted for attempted murder after a shooting, the Lexington County Sheriff’s Department said Saturday night.

The sheriff’s department is searching for Burton William Chavis, according to a news release. The 32-year-old North resident is accused of shooting a man Tuesday in the West Columbia area of Lexington County, the sheriff’s department said.

Chavis, and 27-year-old Elgin resident Bobby James Murphy III, are accused of forcing a man out of a home on Platt Springs Road and shooting him, according to the release.

“Based on witness statements and other information detectives have confirmed, Chavis and Murphy were armed with a gun when they forced a man out of a home early Tuesday morning.” Lexington County Sheriff Jay Koon said in the release. “They then tried to force him into a car before shooting him.”

Chavis was the person who pulled the trigger, according to Koon.

The man was shot in the lower body, according to the sheriff’s department. Further information on his condition was not available.

No other injuries were reported.

After the shooting, both Chavis and Murphy left the scene in a car, and deputies were called a short time later, Koon said.

Murphy was arrested Saturday and charged with attempted murder, kidnapping, and possession of a weapon during a violent crime, the sheriff’s department said. No bond was set for Murphy, who remains behind bars at the Lexington County Detention Center, jail records show.

Chavis is wanted on the same charges, according to the release.

There is no word on a motive for the gunfire, or why Chavis and Murphy were trying to force the man into the car.

The sheriff’s department did not say if Chavis is considered a threat to the community.

Anyone who has seen Chavis, or has information on him or the shooting is asked to call CrimeStoppers at 888-CRIME-SC or submit an online tip.

Chavis is facing pending charges from two arrests earlier this year.

On June 7, Chavis was charged with third-degree domestic violence and was released a day later after posting a $5,000 surety bond, Lexington County court records show.

On July 28, Chavis was arrested on a weapons charge for unlawful carrying of a pistol, and a drug count for distributing methamphetamine, according to court records. His bond was set at a combined $6,000 on the charges and he was released from jail July 30, court records show.

Murphy also has a previous criminal record, and is facing a pending charge for second-degree domestic violence from an April 26 arrest in Lexington County, according to court records. Murphy previously pleaded guilty to shoplifting (2020), domestic violence (2016), and assault & battery (2014) charges, Lexington County court records show.

This is a developing story, check back for updates.

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