CLOVER — A York man shot his drunk cousin in the leg while driving in Clover on Saturday after his relative assaulted him with a cell phone and flashlight and threatened to harm his girlfriend, deputies say.
Deputies were sent to the intersection of Hines Road and U.S. 321 in Clover at about 10:20 p.m. after receiving word about a gunshot victim, according to a York County Sheriff's report. As police arrived, paramedics were treating Anthony Scott Howe, 35, who suffered from a gunshot wound to his leg.
Police found Michael Eugene Lanier, 21, sitting on the curb, the report states. Deputies identified him as the shooter.
Lanier told authorities that he was at his house on Ashe Road in York when Howe, his cousin, called asking his grandmother to pick him up from the Mustang gas station in Clover, the report states. Lanier went instead, finding his cousin at the Piggly Wiggly.
Lanier picked Howe up and they began travelling south on U.S. 321 when Howe became upset that Lanier did not pick up his girlfriend, the report states. According to Lanier, Howe threatened to beat up his girlfriend.
Lanier said he would not allow that to happen, the report states. Howe threw his cell phone at Lanier, hitting him on the left side of the face. Lanier tried to unfasten his seat belt as Howe beat him in the face and head with a flashlight.
Lanier managed to grab a rifle from the back floorboard while Howe continued to hit him, the report states. The two wrestled for the gun. Howe aimed the rifle "low," the report states, and fired a bullet into Howe's leg. The truck crashed into a fence on U.S. 321. Lanier, who suffered scrapes and knots on his forehead, flagged a Piedmont EMS ambulance truck travelling down the highway. He was unable to call 911 because his cell phone was not working.
Lanier told deputies his cousin was "extremely intoxicated" and had just come from a bar in Clover, the report states. Howe was uncooperative with deputies and paramedics and refused to give any information about the incident. Lanier was not charged.