A South Carolina homeowner awakened at midnight by loud banging on his front door and bright lights shining through his windows believed was an intruder trying to break into his home when he grabbed his pistol and walked towards his front door to investigate.
Dick Tench ended up shot by a Greenville County sheriff’s deputy who claims he confused him for a burglar.
“Who are you? Why you’re here?” asked a wounded Tench seconds after he was shot the night of June 14.
The deputy responds by telling him they received an alarm call from the residence, so they came to investigate.
“We don’t have an alarm,” Tench says.
The bodycam video released by the department Monday includes a lot of “copsplaining” and greatly differs from the account given by the Greenville Sheriff’s Office for weeks.
“The Sheriff’s Office’s statement for weeks after the shooting that my client opened his front door and aimed at deputy and you can look at that body cam – that ends that version,” Beattie Ashmore, Tench’s attorney, told GreenvilleOnline today after the sheriff’s office posted a clip of the shooting to their YouTube channel.
“It’s difficult to explain how something like this could have happened.”
Captain Tim Brown of the Greenville Sheriff’s Office of Professional Standards, says in the video posted to YouTube the deputy walked away from Tench’s front porch.
Brown says he later approached it again when he saw movement inside of the house.
Captain Brown said the deputy, which the department has not yet named, saw Mr. Tench holding a gun pointing it at him as he pointed his flashlight at him.
The deputy can be seen on the video pointing his flashlight through the window from a distance, aiming it at Tench.
Tench was never charged with any crime, according to the sheriff’s office.
It happened after a deputy responded to an emergency alarm reported to Greenville County Communications.
Though Tench claims he doesn’t have an alarm in the video, the deputy went to his home after failed attempts to contact the cellphone linked to the alarm that gave the alert.
About 35 seconds after firing shots through Tench’s front door’s window, the deputy begins talking to the man inside of his home while standing in his front yard.
Eventually, the deputy walks inside Tench’s home through the front door in order to communicate with him, as he cries in pain.
“Where are you hit?”
“In the groin and in the chest.”
“Don’t fucking do it, man,” Tench yells, apparently thinking the cop might shoot him again.
“You pointed a gun at me, man!” the cop screams back.
“You were at my house,” Tench cries, obviously in pain.
“I rang your doorbell because we got an alarm call.”
That’s when Tench’s wife apparently enters the scene and goes into shock.
“Oh my god! Oh my god! Oh my god!”
“Get the ambulance here, man, I’m going to fucking die,” Tench urges the deputy.
“They’re coming. They’re coming.”
“Just stay with me,” the deputy says.
“You shot me here, and you shot me here,” the homeowner says as he’s hunched over on the floor.
“Just take some deep breaths.”
“What is going on?” Tench’s wife asks.
“I saw lights and I heard the door bell ring, so I got my gun. I’m a concealed weapons guy.”
The deputy begins saying that someone hit a panic alarm, which led them back to their address.
“It was nobody here,” Tench insists.
Ashmore says Tench came to see who was at his door after he saw reflections from the deputy’s flashlight, believing he may be an intruder.
“He carries a concealed weapons permit. That’s a 4-hour class where they teach you to first know what you’re shooting at when you first pull the trigger. Apparently, the officer didn’t attend that class.”
Ashmore also indicated video proves deputies lied about the deputy’s justification for shooting Mr. Tench.
“Somebody was ‘[lying],” he said, referring to the deputy.
Mr. Tench is reportedly recovering after spending the first 30 days after being shot with the bullets still lodged in his body.
He was shot a total of four times.
One gunshot struck his aortic artery and one bullet hit him in the pelvis.
Two other bullets grazed Tench on his side, according to Ashmore.
“This has shaken him to the core,” Ashmore said.
“They are super fine people. There’s just more to the story here.”
Currently, the 13th Circuit Solicitor’s Office and the State Law Enforcement Division are investigating the shooting.
There’s also an ongoing internal affairs investigation into whether or not the deputy who shot Tench violated the department’s excessive force policy.
The deputy has been placed on paid leave, which is standard practice for departments across the country.
Watch our edited video above or the video with the copsplaining below. Both include profanity. Here is the full unedited video without the copsplaining.