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GBI: Ellabell man killed in shooting by officer during chase
LL BCN 050523

An Ellabell man died May 4 after he was shot by a state law enforcement officer during a chase on Highway 280 near I-16 in Black Creek.

The man shot was identified as Walter Kye Herman, 29.

The officer, who serves with the Department of Public Safety’s Motor Carrier Compliance Division, was injured during the chase, and was taken to Memorial Medical Center in Savannah. His injuries were not life threatening, authorities said. The shooting is under investigation by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

A woman working in the Marathon gas station near Exit 143 said there was an accident on 280 when a pickup struck another pickup then drove away.

The MCCD officer who was getting out to go into the gas station saw the accident, got back in his cruiser and began to follow the vehicle that had left the accident scene, according to the witness.

According to the GBI, Herman stopped the car after a short pursuit that began around 6:40 p.m. The officer approached Herman’s door and spoke with Herman before attempting to place handcuffs on him.

The GBI said Herman sped off while the officer was still reaching inside the car. The officer was dragged about one-tenth of a mile. The vehicle hit a road sign and began to travel off the roadway down a steep embankment. According to the report the officer fired his weapon, causing both he and Herman to fall from the car which eventually came to a stop. Herman died at the scene.

He was described as a construction worker, a talented artist and a Gators fan. He left behind a son and two daughters who was “most proud of his children and had a place in his heart for people in need,” according to his obituary.

Herman’s funeral is Friday.

The GBI investigation is ongoing. Once the investigation is complete, the case will be given to the Atlantic Circuit District Attorney’s Office for review, the GBI said.

According to the GBI website, there have been 36 shootings involving officers so far in 2023 in Georgia. Sixteen of them have been fatal

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