2 dead after car fire on Henry Lawton Road

Authorities said two men exchanged gunfire in an argument over public urination.
Authorities said two men exchanged gunfire in an argument over public urination.(Gray News)
Updated: Feb. 8, 2020 at 10:22 PM EST
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RIDGELAND, S.C. (WTOC) - Two people are dead after a car crashed into a ditch along Henry Lawton Road in Ridgeland.

The Jasper County Sheriff’s Office says deputies responded shortly after 9:00 p.m. to find the car on fire.

Investigators are working to find out why the fire burned the inside of the car but not the outside.

The fire chief for the Ridgeland Fire Department says what happened here Saturday night is a mystery. What they do know so far is the car was driving down Henry Lawton Road when the car veered off the road and ended up in this ditch, without hitting anything. When first responders got there they found two bodies inside and the car was completely charred from the inside.

The crash Saturday night was called in as a car fire. When the fire department arrived and found two people inside, questions started piling up.

The fire chief says the car looked normal from the outside, but when the door was opened, it was nothing but a burnt out shell.

The two victims, Ridgeland residents Clyde Heyward and Earl Lawrence, had passed away inside the car by the time first responders arrived to the scene.

Initially, the fire department believed it might have been a crime scene, and called in the police. But once they realized there was no obvious signs of a crime, they called in the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division to investigate.

“It was just, it was uh, something we don’t see a lot," said Fire Chief Bradley Bonds. "It was a car right off the side of the road, looked perfect, you open it up it was burned. So strange, to say the least.”

SLED has since taken over the case. The Ridgeland fire chief says he looks forward to getting answers.

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