York County Sheriff's Office marks ambush anniversary with emotional videos

YORK COUNTY, S.C. — As the nation honors law enforcement appreciation day, the York County Sheriff’s Office is sharing previews of a video series they put together to mark the one-year anniversary of a tragic ambush that took the life of Detective Mike Doty.

The videos, posted to the agency's YouTube page, include parts of interviews with law enforcement officers involved in the ambush in January 2018.

“We hadn’t even gotten around the residence when the most God-awful gunfire breaks out,” Lt. Mike Ligon said in one of the clips.

For the first time, some of the officers are opening up about the terrifying ambush on law enforcement officers nearly one year ago, but they remember it like it was yesterday.

“I can hear the shots being fired and I can feel them. I could feel the percussion,” said Cpl. Chris Laurencio.

Dozens of officers from multiple agencies were desperately searching for a domestic violence suspect off South Paraham Road on the night of Jan. 15, 2018.

The suspect, Christian McCall, had moved from a home to the woods. It was clear he was armed and not afraid to fire at law enforcement.

“It’s not a natural thing to put yourself in the line of fire,” one of the officers said.

In the early morning hours of Jan. 16, 2018, hours after the search began, McCall allegedly shot four officers.

“I look to my left and we’ve got somebody down,” Ligon said.

Sgt. Grady Gonzales said, “I realize that it’s [Sgt. Buddy Brown] about 25 yards off and I said, ‘Bro, just stay there, I’ll come back and get you. I swear I’ll come back and get you.’”

One of the four shot was Doty.

Sheriff Kevin Tolson said, “I shook his chest and yelled ‘Mike! Mike! Mike!”

Doty died from his injuries.

In one of the videos, the Sheriff's Office said the loss was "one of the biggest tragedies to the Sheriff’s Office in its 232-year history."

The 809 foundation set up in memory of Doty, is encouraging people across our area to light their porches or business with a blue light over the next week in honor of Doty.

The 809 Foundation is organizing at “Blue Out” on Thursday, Jan.17th.

The York County Sheriff's Office will release a series of three videos next week to mark the one-year anniversary of that tragedy. They’re about one hour each.

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