Reports: Honea Path suspect led officers on chase, pulled knife - FOX Carolina 21

Reports: Honea Path suspect led officers on chase, pulled knife before being subdued, injured

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Brian 'B.J.' Hatcher's family said he is in critical condition (Photo provided by Hatcher family) Brian 'B.J.' Hatcher's family said he is in critical condition (Photo provided by Hatcher family)
HONEA PATH, SC (FOX Carolina) -

Honea Path's police chief said the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division is investigating after officers forcefully subdued a suspect who turned toward them with a knife Friday night. The suspect's family said he was critically injured during the incident.

Chief David King said Brian “B.J.” Hatcher was charged with failure to stop for blue lights, driving under suspension third offense and possession of drug paraphernalia following the incident. Warrants are also being sought for possession of methamphetamine and resisting arrest, King said.

The incident followed a traffic stop on Highway 76 near East End Street.

According to the police report, officers were watching a SUV they had received complaints about regarding drug activity and when the vehicle passed them going fast then crossed a double yellow line. Officers put on their blue lights but the driver - identified as Hatcher - did not stop, speeding up to 100 mph, police said.

About 2 miles from when they turned their blue lights on, police said Hatcher stopped. When he got out of the car, police said Hatcher's back was toward them but as officers approached, he turned around and had a knife. 

Hatcher was only two to three feet from the officer at the time, King said. The report states Hatcher was told several times to drop the knife but he did not. Then the report said, "Subject was disarmed and arrested."

King said the officer “then physically engaged the suspect to disarm and restrain."

A second officer on the scene assisted until the suspect was handcuffed, King said.

Hatcher was then transported from the scene by EMS.

Hatcher's sister, Becky Watson,  said Hatcher suffered a broken jaw, a broken arm, broken nose, ruptured ear drum, and other head injuries and internal injuries.

Watson said Hatcher was in critical condition in the intensive care unit at Greenville Memorial Hospital, where he has had multiple surgeries and as of Monday was still unable to breathe or eat on his own and is still unconscious.

"They beat him like a dog," Watson said. "They've got tasers, other ways to bring him down."

Watson believes the force police used against Hatcher was excessive and believe the details surrounding the incident should be investigated further.

"We've got good cops and bad cops," said Watson. "Good cops will do anything to help you, these cops carry the badge like they own the world."

A background check on Hatcher shows a long history of arrests, mostly for driving violations. Watson said  her brother has had trouble with the law in the past but said he  has always been cooperative.

"He's never beat an officer. He's never fought an officer," said Watson.

King said t SLED is investigating and that video evidence and hard drives had been turned over as part of the investigation. King said his department is cooperating fully with SLED.

Both officers will remain on administrative suspension until the investigation is completed, which is standard procedure when a officer is involved in this type of incident, King said.

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