Solicitor: Retired trooper justified in use of force in shooting - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Retired trooper won't face criminal charges in shooting

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A retired South Carolina High Patrol trooper who fatally shot a home intruder on Nov. 14  was justified in his use of force, according to Solicitor Duffie Stone.

Solicitor Duffie Stone announced the decision on Thursday.

Retired Lt. Chuck Wise, 51, shot and killed 39-year-old Paul Edward Rowell, of Mobile, Ala., who broke into his home at about 2 a.m. on Palmetto Bluff Road in Bluffton, according to the Beaufort County Sheriff's Office. 

Wise told the sheriff's office that he and his wife were woken up by their dogs barking. He grabbed a flashlight and looked outside the front door to investigate. That's when Rowell got out of a truck parked in front of his home.

As Rowell walked up to his house, Wise got a handgun and returned to the door, according to the sheriff's office. He told Rowell to leave and warned him that he was armed. Rowell insisted on coming inside and Wise fired a gunshot into the air, according to the sheriff's office.

The shooting was investigated by the Beaufort County Sheriff's Office and the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division.

"Mr. Wise had a right to protect himself, his family and his home," Stone said. "The evidence showed that is exactly what he did. He will not be charged with any criminal offense," Stone said in a statement.

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