Police, armed man in standoff at Conway Medical ER - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina

Police, armed man in standoff at Conway Medical ER

CONWAY, SC (WIS) - The Conway Medical Center is treating patients Wednesday, as police continue negotiations with an armed man who they say has been holed up in a car outside the emergency room since late Tuesday evening.

Julie Rajotte, spokeswoman for the Conway Medical Center, told our sister station WMBF News that a man drove up to the ambulance bay Tuesday night in a blue Firebird and would not move.  When security asked him to move, he refused, and local law enforcement was dispatched to the scene.

As a part of routine code, hospital administrators locked down the facility shortly after local law enforcement arrived.  Rajotte said the area around the emergency room was secured, and patients are being treated in other areas of the hospital. People are still encouraged to go to other hospitals until the situation is resolved.

When the man refused to comply with officers, the Horry County SWAT and Negotiation Team was called for back-up. Officials have blocked off an area of parking and the immediate surroundings outside of the emergency room while they continue to negotiate with the man.

Conway Police Capt. Rodney Sessions said police and SWAT members are communicating with the man by yelling through the car window. Police say when the man is not talking to police, he turns his music up.

WMBF News has been told that during negotiations, the man asked to speak with his probation officer, who was immediately called.  That probation officer has now become part of the ongoing negotiation process.

Police believe the man may be from Socastee because of previous incidents with the Horry County Police Department. There are no details on what those incidents were.

Patients receiving treatment in the emergency room area of the hospital were moved to a different location as a security precaution, according to Rajotte.  Ambulances were being diverted and incoming patients were being transported to other local hospitals.

Rajotte says despite conflicting reports, the man never entered the facility, and no one is being held hostage with the man inside of his car.

Posted by Bryce Mursch

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