From left to right: Chad Howard and Scottie Howard. (Greenville Co. Detention Center)
GREENVILLE, SC (FOX Carolina) -
Greenville County deputies said a drunken man prompted a manhunt after he threatened another man with a knife Wednesday night.
Deputies said that at about 6 p.m. a Travelers Rest man noticed a vehicle that appeared to be disabled near his driveway. They said that when the homeowner tried to assist the three people inside the vehicle, the driver waved him away. They said the homeowner believed the driver was extremely intoxicated. They said the homeowner then called the Highway Patrol to report a drunken driver.
Investigators said that a few minutes later, the homeowner noticed the same vehicle near the intersection of White Horse Road Extension and Highway 25. They said the homeowner then used his own vehicle to block the other vehicle, and called the Highway Patrol again.
Deputies said that when the homeowner tried to take the keys from the driver, the driver became combative and slashed a small knife at him. They said that was when the homeowner pulled out his gun and pointed it at the driver. They said the driver then fled the scene.
Lee Peaden said his dog Jake wouldn't start barking and would run near a wooded area behind his house.
"If it wasn't for Jake, I wouldn't have known the fella was up there," Peaden said.
He said several minutes later a man wearing a ball cap walked out of the woods.
"He said he was lost and was trying to find Buncombe Road," Peaden said. "I immediately called 911 and that's when they picked him up down the road," he said.
Investigators said they called in search dogs and found the driver, 39-year-old Chad Howard, hiding in some nearby woods.
Deputies said Howard, his 14-year-old son and his passenger, Scottie Howard, were arrested at the scene. They said all three were intoxicated.
Chad Howard was charged with child endangerment, contributing to the delinquency of a minor and second-degree assault and battery.
Scottie Howard and the 14-year-old boy were charged with public disorderly conduct.
Deputies said they never suggest private citizens take law enforcement action into their own hands.
"While (the homeowner's) actions were well intentioned, they could have placed him in grave danger," said Greenville County Deputy Laura Campbell.
Campbell said residents should report suspicious activity to the proper law enforcement agency and become good witnesses only.
Copyright 2012 FOX Carolina (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
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