Woman mouths ‘help me’ to officer, leads to shooting suspect’s arrest

Posted at 8:23 AM, June 12, 2023

(Scripps News) – A woman who mouthed “help me” to an officer during a traffic stop led to the arrest of a shooting suspect.

The North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, Police Department said Officer Kayla Wallace pulled over a car in late May for disregarding a red light. The department said as Wallace talked to the driver and the male passenger, the female driver mouthed “help me” to the officer repeatedly while the passenger wasn’t looking.

Kayla Wallace and Collins Bates combo image

(L) Officer Kayla Wallace (North Myrtle Beach PD)/(R) Collins Bates (Reuben Long Detention Center)

The department said Wallace removed the passenger and placed him in her patrol car. The driver then “frantically” told Wallace that the passenger had just shot someone.

Immediately after that, an alert went out on the radio indicating that officers should be on the lookout for the suspect involved in that shooting, officials said.

“Due to Officer Wallace proactively patrolling the streets of North Myrtle Beach, even to the last 30 minutes of her shift, a suspect in a shooting was arrested and an unlawfully carried pistol was recovered underneath the suspect’s seat,” the department wrote on its Facebook page. “Our department and our community is lucky to have Officer Wallace.”

WMBF-TV reported that Collins Bates was arrested in connection with the shooting and kidnapping of the passenger. According to Horry County court records, Bates is facing multiple criminal charges, including kidnapping, attempted murder, and illegal possession of a weapon.

This story was originally published by Scripps News, an E.W. Scripps Company.

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