Community determined to find firefighter's killer - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Community determined to find firefighter's killer


The Sandfly community is mourning the loss of Isle of Hope and Thunderbolt Firefighter Wesley Franklin.

Police say Franklin was murdered early Monday morning when he tried to stop an armed robbery outside Deb's Lounge on Norwood Avenue just off of Skidaway.

"Everyone started running outside and I saw someone shot in the chest so I started putting pressure on the wound until the ambulance got there," witness Jordan Tyre said.

Franklin was rushed to Memorial University Medical Center where he died during surgery.

"This is a kid who put himelf in harms way to help others. There are not many things more brave than running into a burning building to save someone else. This is a tragedy for our community," Dr. Jerry Williams said.

Franklin just turned twenty one years old earlier this month and started working at Isle of Hope fire when he was just a teenager.

"For him to be here since he was fourteen says a lot about him. He dedicated a lot of days and nights...countless hours," Assistant Chief Marcus Wilson said.

Witnesses say the suspect fired a warning shot at the women, then shot Franklin in the chest and took off.

Officers saturated the area with K9s, but the gunman got away.

Sandfly businesses raised over $10,000 toward a reward on Monday in just a couple of hours.

Police are not releasing whether they have suspects, but local businesses confirm detectives have viewed surveillance video.

If you have any information, call Crimestoppers at 912-234-2020.

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