Sheriff: Teen charged after hitting Richland Co. deputy with stolen vehicle

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Published: Aug. 10, 2022 at 3:55 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 11, 2022 at 8:23 AM EDT
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - Sheriff Leon Lott said a Richland County Sheriff’s Department deputy was injured while on duty Tuesday at around 10 p.m.

Lott said deputies tracked down a stolen vehicle Tuesday evening near the 6000 block of Two Notch Rd. Lott said the 17-year-old Jamon Cheatham drove the vehicle at high speed into one of the responding deputies, SRT Operator Sarah Merriman.

In the video played during the conference, Lott showed where the vehicle pinned her against her patrol vehicle and then went over her. Lott said, “He purposely runs over her.”

Merriman was sent to the hospital with serious injuries. Lott said she will recover but has a long recovery.

Lott said Cheatham is from Orangeburg and has a criminal history. He said he is encouraging no bond be set for him. Lott said, “Until we stop that floodgate that’s open, we will continue to see violent crime on the rise.”

Lott said Cheatham is a flight risk and is wanted by the DJJ. Lott shared his criminal history includes car jacking, grand larceny, a prior attempted murder charge, weapons, larceny, and taking a weapon onto school grounds in the last two years.

He said Cheatham is being charged as an adult with Attempted Murder. Cheatham was taken to the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center and later released after posting bail.

Jamon Cheatham
Jamon Cheatham(RCSD)

Merriman was recognized with a national award earlier this year. She received the Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service. Merriman is the first South Carolina law enforcement officer to receive the national award.

Deputy Sarah Merriman to receive National Award
Deputy Sarah Merriman to receive National Award(Richland County Sheriff’s Department)

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