GASTON COUNTY, N.C. (WBTV) - Law enforcement video related to a July police chase in Gaston County that left one dead and another seriously injured was released on Friday.
The pursuit happened on July 14. Gaston County Sheriffs deputies were pursuing 41-year-old Joshua Soule when, according to NC Highway Patrol, he struck 28-year-old Antrel Dion Garnigan and 48-year-old Shawn Smith before crashing into a house.
Garnigan was killed and Smith was critically injured. Soule is now behind bars, facing multiple charges including driving while impaired.
Gaston County Sheriff's deputies say Soule was the only driver to hit the two men, but some neighbors at the scene said they saw the deputy's car hit one of the men.
The video released Friday is not dash cam footage, so you do not see the actual chase. It does, however, show several deputies from the moment the chase ends onward.
The moment deputies found Soule, you can hear them ordering him to “Get on the ground!” Footage shows an open beer can in one of Soule’s cupholders.
Soule had excuses for deputies as to why he didn’t stop as they chased him down Rankin Avenue.
“My brakes didn’t work, that’s why I had to pull a right!” Soule says.
“No you sped up - you sped up!” one deputy says.
Soule’s panic then seems to shift to remorse.
“Oh my god! Did I hit somebody?” he asks, “Did I hit somebody?”
“No you didn’t hit somebody that we know of,” a deputy tells him, “but that was really stupid!”
Next, Soule looks right at the deputy and says “Just shoot me man, just shoot me.”
Deputies then head down the street and find Garnigan and Smith on the ground, immediately calling EMS for backup.
Neighbors can be heard accusing one deputy of hitting one of the men, which the deputies deny.
Deputies then call for more units, explaining what happened.
“By the time we got over the hill he was 1050. Appareny he struck these two. They’re saying we hit him. This car did not hit him. He had dope in his car and an open container,” a deputy says.
As EMS takes transports both Garnigan and Smith, police try to keep neighbors calm.
“Dash cam will say it all,” a deputy says, “Dash cam will say it all.”
Highway Patrol and an independent expert assessed the deputy’s vehicle after the accident and determined it did not strike a person.