Ahhhh... The life of a News Photographer.
WSPA (Spartanburg) Photog Joel Eaves was out on a routine assignment, getting some video of storm damage at an intersection.
It ended with Eaves being confronted by a guy with a chainsaw.
Here is the Deputies report on the incident from the Spartanburg County Sheriff's Office:
On 08/06/15 I responded to the intersection of Wooten Dr and Old Converse Rd in
Spartanburg County in reference to a vandalized vehicle.
Upon arrival, I spoke with Joel Eaves who works for WSPA. He states that he was
out at this intersection shooting video of the storm damage from earlier in the
day. He had just put up his equipment and got in his vehicle to leave when a
white male, later identified at William Garrett, ran towards his vehicle with a
chain saw in his hand yelling obscenities at him. William wanted Joel to get
out of the car and delete the video he shot of him cutting up a tree. Joel says
that he felt threatened so he did not get out of the car. Joel tried to calmly
tell him that he would not use the video, but he was not getting out of the car.
William then grabbed the top of the half rolled down window and shook it. Joel
rolled the window up. After rolling the window up, William slammed the chain
saw on the hood of the vehicle. He then hit the driver's side mirror with his
hand causing it to break and then kicked the door. He finally walked away and
Joel called 911. I did observe a broken side mirror on the vehicle and a muddy
shoe print on the door. There did not appear to be any damage to the hood of
While on scene, I made contact with William about the incident. I asked him
what was going on and he explained the events as Joel explained them. He did
not dispute causing any of the damage or events.
One of Joel's supervisors was on scene as well. He directed me to a person who
did have video of the event. I watched the video which corroborated the
sequence of events.
I then explained the options for the actions of William. After speaking with
Joel and his boss, they called another supervisor at the office. It was
determined that WSPA would maintain contact with William and his father and
settle the damages out of court. They did not wish to pursue charges. Before I
could have a supervisor sign a waiver of investigation, the supervisor left. I
then had Joel Eaves fill out a waiver of investigation form.
I photographed the damages to the vehicle that was damaged. Joel did provide