Man granted $70K bond in connection with fleeing the scene that - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Man granted $70K bond in connection with fleeing the scene that killed a woman

(Source: J Reuben Long) (Source: J Reuben Long)
Source: Lisa Gresci Source: Lisa Gresci
Source: Jonathan Dick Source: Jonathan Dick
Source: Lisa Gresci Source: Lisa Gresci

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Early Friday morning, the South Carolina Highway Patrol responded to a wreck on Limerick Road, off of Forestbrook Road. Police say the car crashed into a ditch, the driver was missing, and a female passenger was found dead and barely clothed in the front seat. 

According to Horry County Sheriff's Office and SCHP, the driver of the vehicle identified as 44-year-old Terry Rushton from Myrtle Beach, has been charged with wreckless homicide and hit and run. Rushton has been granted a $70,000 bond.

According to Horry County Deputy Coroner Michelle McSpadden the victim has been identified as Mary Catherine Polk, 45, of Little River. McSpadden said an autopsy was performed Friday afternoon. The coroner stated Polk died of injuries sustained in the collision.

According to SCHP, the Nissan was traveling West on Limerick road and struck a ditch.

The silver Nissan Altima was sticking straight out of the ditch off of Limerick Road when police arrived, and the driver was no longer in the car. Polk was barely clothed, both the Horry County Police Department and South Carolina Highway Patrol were investigating the crash.

The ditch that car was found in is more than five feet deep. Emergency crews were on scene for hours before removing the car and woman from the ditch. Horry County Police brought in dogs to sniff out the surrounding woods, but Lt. Raul Denis with the Horry County Police Department says there is no foul play involved in this accident, and South Carolina Highway Patrol will be taking the investigation from here.

Some of the neighbors who live close by the ditch say they heard a loud bang early that morning around 5 a.m. One woman said she looked out the window but didn't see anything. Byron Upchurch has lived on the road for over 30 years, and says he has never seen an accident this serious. Upchurch thought the bend in the road has caused some drivers to crash, he's only seen three to four accidents. 

Early Friday morning, Upchurch woke up to a knock on his door.

"At about 8:15 Friday morning, the Highway Patrol rang my door bell, and knocked on the door. They wanted to know if I was aware of the accident, which I was not," Upchurch explained. 

"All the patrol cars and the fire truck, they had the road barricaded, with the crime scene tape, I thought there must be something more, you know something out of the ordinary," Upchurch said. 

One woman said she knew the police must have been searching for someone when she saw the patrol car driving through the neighborhood slowly, and soon neighbors saw search dogs were on scene, sniffing through the surrounding areas.

"They wanted to know if anybody was in the camper here, I said no, that we had just returned from a camping trip," Upchurch said. 

At this time, police said there was no foul play involved in this accident but the fact the driver wasn't at the scene, has some neighbors feeling a bit differently.

Upchurch said he is, "cautious... you know.. just.. just.. concerned."

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