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GBI investigates officer-involved shooting in Effingham County
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Staff Reports

The GBI is investigating an officer-involved shooting in Effingham County. The Georgia State Patrol (GSP) asked the GBI to conduct an independent investigation on July 2. One man was shot and killed.  No officers/deputies were injured in this incident. 

The preliminary information indicates that on Sunday, July 2, at about 11:30 p.m., an Effingham County Sheriff’s deputy conducted a traffic stop on Old River Road in Effingham County.  The driver, later identified as Sam Knight, 40, of Brooklet, got out of the truck and spoke with the deputy. When the deputy walked to the passenger side of the truck, Knight ran to the truck and drove away from the stop. Knight traveled several miles down Old River Road before turning onto the westbound on ramp of Interstate 16. Knight began firing at the pursuing deputy, and the deputy returned fire. Knight lost control of the truck, causing it to come to rest on its passenger side.  Knight and Effingham County deputies exchanged gunfire again.  A few minutes later, GSP and Bryan County deputies arrived on scene.  Knight and law enforcement officers from multiple agencies exchanged gunfire again.  Knight was hit multiple times and died at the scene.

The incident resulted in I-16 being shut down in both directions from Exit 143/Hwy 280 in Bryan County to Exit 152/Jimmy Deloach in Chatham County until about 5 a.m. on July 3.

Knight’s body was taken to the GBI Medical Examiner’s Office in Pooler for an autopsy.

Troopers from the Georgia State Patrol, deputies from the Effingham County Sheriff’s Office, and a deputy from the Bryan County Sheriff’s Office were involved in the shooting. 

The GBI will conduct an independent investigation. Once complete, the case file will be given to the Ogeechee District Attorney’s Office for review.

The GBI has been requested to investigate 48 officer-involved shootings thus far in 2023.

 The Herald will post updates as they become available.