Family vows to sue deputies in wake of fatal shooting - FOX Carolina 21

Family vows to sue Greenville Co. deputies in wake of fatal shooting

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James Howard with a photo of his stepson Jordan Browder. (June 5, 2014/FOX Carolina) James Howard with a photo of his stepson Jordan Browder. (June 5, 2014/FOX Carolina)
Deputies investigate the fatal shooting on Monday. (June 2, 2014/FOX Carolina iWitness) Deputies investigate the fatal shooting on Monday. (June 2, 2014/FOX Carolina iWitness)
Jordan Browder, Dylan Lamar Tiller and Michael Harden. (Source: Greenville Co. Sheriff's Office and Anderson Co. Sheriff's Office) Jordan Browder, Dylan Lamar Tiller and Michael Harden. (Source: Greenville Co. Sheriff's Office and Anderson Co. Sheriff's Office)
PIEDMONT, SC (FOX Carolina) -

Deputies said two men found asleep in a car prior to a fatal officer-involved shooting were on a crime-spree hours earlier, but the victim's family is vowing to sue the sheriff's office upset with how events unfolded Monday.

Deputies said they were called to the Citgo gas station on Piedmont Highway where two men were asleep inside the SUV with a gun in plain sight when the officer was forced to open fire.

"He reaches towards his waistband and advances towards the deputy," said deputy Jonathan Smith.

Smith said 21-year-old Dylan Tiller and 22-year-old Jordan Browder were the men inside the car and as officers ordered them to get out with their hands up, Tiller gave up quickly, but Browder did not.

Deputies said when Browder got out of the car, he didn't follow commands but advanced towards an officer while reaching for his waistband, ultimately prompting the officer to shoot.

"The deputy fired at least one time striking the suspect," Smith said.

Browder died at the scene. His step-father James Howard wants to know more about what unfolded Monday morning and is vowing to sue the Greenville County Sheriff's Office.

Howard admits his step-son had a criminal history but said he moved to Greenville to try to change his life, having settled down, started a family and a job.

"I want to see the evidence, I want to see the vehicle, I want to see everything they have... because if they are lying to cover up the truth then there will be hell to pay," Howard said.

But Tiller's attorney John Reckenbeil shares another side to the story. He said his client and Browder had been smoking meth and were on a 48-hour crime spree before the shooting. Reckenbeil said his client is cooperating with investigators.

"It became abundantly clear to him that his responsibility was to tell the truth," Reckenbeil said.

Reckenbeil said both men were armed prior to the shooting. Deputies said they found a gun on Tiller and another in the car.

"Jordan kept a .45 in his waistband and Jordan clearly said to him that he could not go to jail because he owed child support and these were things leading to this tragic event," Reckenbeil said.

But deputies said no gun or any other type of weapon was found on Browder and that is why Howard says he plans to file suit against the sheriff's office.

"I wonder if it was someone over zealous, or call it what it is: trigger happy," Howard said.

Anderson County deputies said Tiller, Browder and a third person, 20-year-old Michael Harden, were on involved in car break-ins in the River Road area between late Saturday and early Sunday.

Tiller remains in the Greenville County Detention Center on charges of unlawful carrying of a pistol, sale or delivery of pistol to and possession by unlawful person, manufacturing, distribution, etc. of methamphetamine and financial transaction card theft. Anderson County deputies said they have additional charges pending against him in connection with the break-ins.

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