COLUMBIA, S.C. (NewsNation) — A man is suing a South Carolina sheriff’s office, alleging deputies shot at him dozens of times while he was having a mental health emergency.
Trevor Mullinax, 29, was struck by nine of the 47 shots fired by authorities when he was in a parked truck with a shotgun in his lap. His hands, however, were raised at the time. He suffered three wounds to the head, according to a lawsuit filed against the York County Sheriff’s Office earlier this month.
The four sheriff’s deputies started shooting only a few seconds after arriving on the scene and yelling “Hands!” several times, as seen in police dashcam video released by Mullinax’s lawyers. The barrage lasted all of five seconds, leaving the pickup windshield riddled with bullet holes.
The officers claimed they thought Mullinax was getting ready to flee.
Mullinax’s mother, Tammy Beason, said she was trying to comfort her son after he threatened to kill himself. She was standing by the driver’s-side window when the officers opened fire.
She wasn’t wounded but was placed in handcuffs.
State records obtained and reviewed by NBC News indicate he has previously been arrested for breaking and entering, burglary and misdemeanor domestic violence.
WBTV in South Carolina reported that three of the four deputies involved in the shooting are still on the force. The fourth voluntarily left the agency last April.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.