FOREST ACRES, SC (WIS) - A man charged with the murder of a Forest Acres police officer waived his right to a bond hearing on Thursday.
The suspect, identified as Jarvis Hall, 34, did not appear in court to answer to the murder charge lobbed against him in the death of Forest Acres police officer Greg Alia, 32.
Alia, was a 7-year veteran of the force. He was married and just had a baby boy with his wife, Kassy.
"He was an outstanding young man, he was an outstanding police officer, he was a role model for other officers," Forest Acres Police Chief Gene Sealy said.
Police were called to Richland Mall just before 8 a.m. in regard to a suspicious person inside a vehicle. The suspect, identified as Jarvis Hall, 34, tried to flee the scene before shooting and killing Alia, Sealy said.
Authorities have charged Hall with murder and possession of a weapon during a violent crime.
Hall, according to investigators, was approached by Alia and a second officer. Hall, officials said, got into a struggle with Alia, pulled out a gun, and fired on Alia.
The handgun that Hall used in the shooting "was reported stolen from Lexington County on or about September 2, 2015," according to an arrest warrant.
Officers with the Richland County Sheriff's Department, Columbia Police Department, Richland County EMS, and others agencies also responded to the shooting.
Jeanette Roach, a witness to the scene, saw officers arrive.
"They were very frantic, and they were trying to hurry, you know, getting here," Roach said. "And nothing was stopping them either, you know. They were coming wide open. It was really scary to see something like that. It was really scary."
A.C. Flora High School was also placed on a brief lockdown while officers investigated the scene, but that lockdown was lifted shortly after 9 a.m.
Officials have not detailed any type of charges against Hall. A criminal background check on Hall finds several other offenses, but mostly misdemeanor charges such as unlawful carrying of a weapon, failure to comply, and solicitation.
Hall remains in custody and is being questioned.
"Our Forest Acres Police Department puts themselves out on the line for us everyday; with no expectations of thanks, reward, or thoughts for their own safety," Forest Acres Mayor Frank Brunson said in a statement. "Today that risk was revealed as we mourn the tragic murder Officer Gregory Alia."
Brunson said the city is heartbroken.
"The Town of Forest Acres is a close knit family and the entire community is heartbroken," Brunson said. "We are coming together to support our police officers and the Alia family. We will continue to care for and support his newborn son, wife, and parents. We ask that everyone pray for and think about the Alia's; as we honor Greg's memory and follow his lead of service above self."
Friends and neighbors were in shock when they heard the news.
"I hope his legacy will be not only showing what the community can do and what the police can do for the community," said childhood friend Ryan Herman. "But I want Sal to grow up knowing his father was a hero trying to help and save other people and he died in the line of duty doing what he wanted to do."
Gov. Nikki Haley's office said the governor is also asking the state to pray for the Alia family.
"The governor, Michael and the entire Haley family ask that everyone lift up the family of Officer Greg Alia with love and prayers during this difficult time," a governor spokeswoman said late Wednesday.