LORIS, S.C. (WMBF) - Horry County police are investigating a deadly shooting in Loris.
The Horry County Coroner’s Office said 39-year-old Demetrick Simon died at a McLeod Loris Hospital early Wednesday morning from injuries following a shooting near Maple Street.
WMBF News spoke with the 15th Circuit Solicitor Jimmy Richardson and he said overall, murder rates in Horry County are down from previous years.
He said from Jan. 1 to June 30 there were 10 murders in 2017, 11 in 2018 and four in 2019.
“There’s a lot to be done, there’s no doubt about that,” Richardson said. “One, two murders a year is unacceptable, but in 2017 and 2018 when it was really skyrocketing it was like people have lost their minds.”
We spoke with people who live in the area who said Simon was a good man and they believe he was at the wrong place at the wrong time.
Another person we spoke with said the neighborhood is quiet, mostly everyone is friends and they are surprised it happened there.
Loris Police Chief Gary Buley said since becoming chief in September of last year, one of the reasons he believes crime has decreased in the area is because of the new training he’s implemented.
He said officers go through trainings focused on trends when it comes to drug, gangs and violent crime. Buley added they reach out to homeowners in those areas to get them involved with trying to stop the violence.
Richardson said with cases like this one, Horry County police will step in to help. He said the problem with this area is those doing the crimes can cross jurisdiction.
“With Loris you’ll almost see a mirroring effect, around border towns," he said. "So, you got Loris on our side and Tabor City on the other side. What happens is in these border towns, bad guys, especially gang members, will set up so they can bring jurisdiction into an issue.”
We’re still waiting on more information about what led up to the shooting and potential suspects from Horry County police.
Anyone with information is asked to call the HCPD tip line at 843-915-8477.