ROCK HILL A North Carolina fugitive was arrested in Rock Hill Wednesday after police say a woman hit him with her car when he stepped out into the road, leaving behind a pair of shoes and a 12-pack of beer in the street.
At about 8:20 p.m., a woman, 24, and a man flagged down officers patrolling the 900 block of Riverview Road, according to a Rock Hill police report. The woman told police she was driving southbound on Riverview when she hit a man who stepped into the road in front of her car.
The man, who “clearly” suffered injuries, got up off the ground and walked toward the American’s Best Value Inn, the report states. Police examined the scene of the crash, observing damage to the woman’s car that appeared consistent with a pedestrian collision. They also found a pair of men’s shoes and the remains of a 12-pack of beer in the road.
Fearing for the man’s health, police spoke with several bystanders and the hotel’s manager and found the pedestrian, identified as Harry Stoots Jr., 34, in a fourth-floor room, the report states. Stoots, police reported, had injuries “consistent with being struck by a vehicle.”
As paramedics treated Stoots and prepared to transfer him to Piedmont Medical Center, an officer performed a routine background check using a federal criminal database made available to law enforcement by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Police found that Stoots was listed as a fugitive, wanted by North Carolina’s department of probation and parole for a parole violation related to a 2013 conviction for breaking and entering, a felony worth more than a year in prison.
Probation officials confirmed that Stoots was wanted, the report states, and they planned to extradite him back to North Carolina. Stoots was taken to the hospital, where he was treated for minor injuries to his leg and head. About two hours later, Stoots was released from the hospital and taken into custody. He was served with a fugitive warrant and also cited with pedestrian unlawfully in the roadway.
Records with the N.C. Department of Public Safety show that Stoots was released from prison on parole on May 15. He is listed as an “absconder” from his parole supervision, meaning he failed to report to his probation or parole officer. Prison records show Stoots has been imprisoned several times in the past, dating back to 1998 when he was convicted of unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, operating a vehicle without a license and several drug charges.
For the next several years, records show, he was in and out of prison, facing convictions for: hit-and-run, resisting an officer, damage to property, felony breaking and entering and assault on a female.
Jonathan McFadden • 803-329-4082
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