ORANGEBURG COUNTY, S.C. (WCSC) - An Orangeburg County man who received a payment of $205,000 from a county insurance policy after leading deputies on a chase, jumped from his moving car and ran into the woods during that incident, newly-released incident reports state.
In June, Orangeburg County made the payment to Quinnton Henderson, the man who court records state pleaded guilty to not pulling over for police in July 2014.
State records show Henderson filed an insurance claim one month later, in August 2014, and this past June, he received a check. He complained that his leg was hurting, according to the incident report.
The newly-released reports from the Orangeburg County Sheriff’s Office state, “The suspect attempted to evade this unit by crossing over the double yellow line into on coming traffic."
It was then that deputies said they turned their blue lights and sirens on. The suspect continued down the road at a “high rate of speed,” the report stated. It went on to say the chase continued down a number of streets.
“The subject jumped out of [his car] near Goff Street and ran towards the wood area and abandoned house as his vehicle continued down Jamison Avenue and struck a tree,” the report states.
After driving through the brush, the deputy said he saw the suspect.
“The subject was handcuffed at that point and then asked why were we chasing him,” the report states. “The subject complained about his right leg hurting.”
The report then said EMS came and transported him to The Regional Medical Center for evaluation. He was charged with crossing the center line and failure to stop for blue lights.
Since that chase, his rap sheet has only grown. He’s been charged with attempted murder, kidnapping, and not pulling over for police again.
That second police chase was all caught on camera last year by the Holly Hill Police Department.
“He was stopped for going left of center," Holly Hill Police Chief Joshua Detter said. “[The officer] asked him to step out of the car and that’s when he took off.... Shortly, after it started, dispatch came back, and said they had warrants for his arrest. So, we continued the chase. It went just over 30 miles.”
According to the chief, at one point, the suspect hit speeds of 100 miles-per-hour. But, it all came to an end when, he says, Henderson’s engine started to smoke.
“I mean we’re rewarding bad behavior. That’s the way I look at it," Detter said. "Now, that I know about this payout and our chase from last year, to me, I think he just ran because, ‘Hey, I’ll get another payout.’ And that’s not right. I mean that’s my tax dollars and your tax dollars. But, they don’t want to take it to a jury trial. The juries in Orangeburg County, I’m told, will never side with the police.”
And for Holly Hill’s police chief, one of six officers in the department, $200,000 goes a long way.
“We’re actually about to end this year’s budget and for the amount of officers I have, I’m just under $200,000 for salaries. So, it’s more than all of us combined," Deter said. "And, obviously, he was chased for something, he pleaded guilty, I believe, but now we’re just gonna give him a couple hundred thousand for what? I don’t understand.”
In addition to the money paid to Henderson, the fund paid more than $56,000 to cover legal expenses.
There’s no trace of a lawsuit, and the state says they don’t have any documents related to this matter.
Orangeburg County Administrator Harold Young said he doesn’t have a comment. Henderson’s lawyer has not responded to requests.
Neither the county nor the sheriff’s office still has explained why a quarter of million dollars was paid out to Henderson.