Richland County (SC) Sheriff Leon Lott says the 6,500-square-foot Florence, SC, home of cop killing suspect Frederick Hopkins had been set up to facilitate an ambush attack on law enforcement. Sergeant Terrence Carraway of the Florence Police Department was killed in the Oct. 3 incident, and six other officers and Florence County Sheriff's deputies were wounded.
“Just going inside that house is chilling," Sheriff Lott said during the press conference. "I’ve been doing this a long time and been to a lot of crime scenes, and this is probably one of the worst that I’ve ever seen.” The Richland County Sheriff's Office has been called in to conduct an investigation of the incident.
According to Lott, crime scene crews from the Richland County Sheriff's Office and the FBI Evidence Response team spent 13 days processing evidence from the scene which includes the house and six blocks of the affluent Florence neighborhood, WBTW reports.
More than 126 guns not believed to be used in the shooting were seized from the home for "safekeeping," Sheriff Lott said during the conference. Three other guns believed to be used in the shooting were seized from the house, including a pistol and two semi-automatic rifles.
A press release from the RCSO says about nine other agencies are providing assistance in the investigation, including the Columbia Police Department, Colleton County Sheriff’s Office, Fairfield County Sheriff’s Office, Lexington County Sheriff’s Department, Lexington County Police Department, Newberry County Sheriff’s Office, Orangeburg County Sheriff’s Office, Sumter Police Department, and the University of SC Department of Law Enforcement.
Four law enforcement officers remain in the hospital, according to the release. Three Florence County deputies are still in the hospital recovering from the incident. Two remain in critical condition, while the other one has been updated to stable condition. The City of Florence police officer has been transferred to a facility in Georgia.
Warrants for Frederick T. Hopkins, Jr. and Seth Hopkins were released on Wednesday. Frederick Hopkins, Jr., 74, is charged with six counts of attempted murder and one count of murder. Seth Hopkins, 27, is charged with second degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor victim 11 to 14 years of age. An additional child sex crime charge, criminal sexual conduct in the first degree, was filed for Seth Hopkins on Friday.
Deputies from the Florence County SO originally went to the home to serve an arrest warrant on Seth Hopkins when they came under fire and called for assistance from Florence officers.