Investigation continues into deputy-involved shooting - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Investigation continues into deputy-involved shooting

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AUGUSTA, GA (WFXG) -

An officer-involved shooting leaves one man dead. What began as normal traffic stop for a Richmond County deputy turned into a deadly scene.

A joint news conference was held Friday afternoon with the Richmond County Sheriff's Office and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. FOX54 was there following the developing story.

What started out as a routine traffic stop for Deputy Michael Woodard turned into a deadly chase.

Authorities say it happened at the Fox Den apartment complex around 4 a.m. Friday when 21 year old Chaz Williams was shot.

Deputy Woodard attempted to pull over Williams for a traffic violation, that's when they say Williams took off in his car which later led to a foot chase into the apartment complex. That's where deputies say they found Williams at his apartment.

The special agent in charge, Patrick Morgan of the GBI, said the shooting happened during an attempt to take Williams into custody.

"During that attempt to take him into custody one of the officers involved did discharge his firearm and right now as a result of that, Mr. Williams is deceased," said Agent Morgan.

Shykinca Stephens, William's girlfriend, was in the apartment when Williams was shot.

"I was in the next room, I heard the gun shots. I was like no, why, no," Stephens, said.

Stephens is now trying to come to grips with the fact that she'll have to raise her 6 month old daughter without her father.

"How am I going to describe this to my daughter? When she gets older and starts asking what am I going to say?" Stephens asked.

Stephens says her boyfriend spent most of his life inside a jail. She says he had issues but she was hoping he would turn his life around. 

"He had been going through a lot in his life, he was military, PTSD, bipolar."

Stephens says when deputies knocked on her door looking for Williams Friday morning; he was cutting his throat with a knife and saying he didn't want to go back to jail.

"His neck was gushing out blood, how can you attack someone? How come you can't stop him from killing himself instead of shooting him? I don't understand that."

Investigators confirmed Deputy Woodard fired multiple shots, but they are not talking about what led up to the deputy pulling his gun and shooting.

"We have no evidence to support any fact that any wrong doing was done," said Sheriff Richard Roundtree.

The sheriff's office said Deputy Woodard is a five year veteran of the Richmond County Sheriff's Office.

"At the initial phase, we find no wrong-doing therefore no officers have been relieved of duty and no disciplinary action has been filed against that officer at all," said Sheriff Roundtree.

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