Greer, SC – A Greenville County sheriff’s deputy accidentally shot a suspect’s mother while trying to take the suspect into custody (video below).
The incident began on Oct. 20 after the Spinx store located at the intersection of Pelham and Batesville Roads reported that 40-year-old Sean Theodore Kaiser had been shoplifting, the Greenville News reported.
A Greenville County sheriff’s deputy responded to the business and viewed surveillance video that showed Kaiser stealing.
“After the deputy arrived at the Spinx, the video tape was reviewed by the deputy, who recognized the shoplifting suspect in the video from a previous call that occurred earlier that morning,” Greenville County Sheriff’s Captain Tim Brown said. “The call was regarding an intoxicated subject involved in a non-violent domestic situation with his mother, who had fled the house after the suspect attempted to take her purse to purchase more beer.”
Bodycam video of the incident showed the deputy, who joined the Greenville County Sheriff’s Office in September of 2018 and completed training in February, went to Kaiser’s mother’s home in the 500-block of Cliffview Court at about 12:30 p.m. and confronted the suspect, the Greenville News reported.
The video showed Kaiser waiting on the front step when the deputy approached.
“Were you at the Spinx this morning?” the deputy asked Kaiser, who was standing with his hands in his pockets.
“Yes,” Kaiser replied.
Bodycam video showed that the deputy informed Kaiser that she was going to read him his Miranda rights.
The suspect turned and walked back into his house, the video showed.
“Hey, where are you going?” the deputy asked, following him into the house.
She grabbed his sleeve and unsuccessfully tried to pull him back outside, the video showed.
“Please don’t do that,” Kaiser told the deputy.
“You don’t run away from me,” she replied.
“I was sexually abused,” Kaiser said.
“This is nothing sexual. Do not leave me again. Do you understand?” the deputy asked.
“Do not grab me,” Kaiser warned in the video.
“Do not run away from me,” the deputy replied.
“Do not grab me,” Kaiser said.
“Do you want me to arrest you right here and right now?” the deputy asked in the video.
“I don’t give a f--k what you do, do not grab me,” he said.
“Do not walk away from me or I will put hands on you,” the deputy, who appeared to be significantly smaller than the suspect, warned him.
“I will respect you and I will talk to you,” Kaiser said.
“Don’t walk away from me,” the deputy commanded him.
“Then don’t f--king grab me,” he replied, leaning toward the deputy in a threatening manner.
“That I can’t guarantee,” the deputy said and Kaiser let loose with a stream of obscenities at her.
That’s when his mother, later identified as Dianne Maros, tried to intervene, the Greenville News reported.
At that point, the deputy radioed for backup, the video showed.
Then the deputy continued to argue with the much larger man about whether she had a right to put hands on him.
Kaiser moved to go upstairs and the deputy grabbed his arm, the video showed.
The two scuffled and the deputy called for backup again.
Then Kaiser’s mother moved to intervene again, first preventing the deputy from handcuffing her son, and then trying to stop him from lunging at the deputy, the video showed.
The video showed Kaiser ran up the stairs and then stopped to turn and argue some more with the deputy.
She ordered him to come back downstairs, but he refused to comply with her commands and wailed “Nooo” at her from the steps like an angry teenager.
“Listen my partner’s coming, you’re going to be under arrest. Get back down here right now!” the deputy yelled at Kaiser in the video.
Kaiser sat down on the staircase and talked with his tearful mother about the shoplifting incident.
The video showed his mother asked if he’d stolen anything and he answered that she knew he had.
And the deputy continued to try to order Kaiser down the stairs, the video showed.
“Yeah you’re gonna come, because there’s a bunch of people coming to me right now,” the deputy warned him.
“That’s fine,” Kaiser replied.
“Get down here right now,” the deputy ordered him.
“Stop with your control,” Kaiser said.
“Jail’s going to be real hard on you bud,” the deputy laughed. “Come down.”
She once again radioed for backup and the video showed she told the dispatcher she would wait for other officers to arrive to make the arrest.
Maros once again tried to talk her son down and he replied by cursing at the deputy, but the video showed he remained seated on the stairs.
Then the video showed that instead of waiting for backup, the deputy again ordered Kaiser to come down the stairs, and then started up the stairs to try and arrest him.
“Come down the stairs now,” the deputy said in soft slow voice.
“Don’t tell me what I have to do because I’ll do whatever the f--k I want,” Kaiser replied, but started to slowly walk down the staircase.
“I’m not going to fight you. I’m stronger than you,” he told the deputy in the video.
“I don’t want to hurt you,” he told her several times as he took a seat at the bottom of the staircase.
The officer tried to get him to allow her to apply handcuffs but he refused, and then sat asking her if she felt powerful.
The deputy informed him that he was breaking the law and told him her backup was on the way.
Kaiser said he understood he would be arrested when other officers arrived.
He also apologized to the deputy if he’d hurt her at any point during the incident, the video showed.
“It would be a lot easier if you would just stand up and put your hands behind your back,” the deputy told him.
And then the video showed she went to try, once again, to take him into custody.
The suspect struggled with the deputy and they wrestled arm to arm, with him still seated on the stairs.
His mother tried to step between them once again and break it up, the video showed.
“I’m stronger than you and I can do whatever I want,” Kaiser said as he got the upper hand on the deputy.
“Let go of me,” the deputy screamed as Kaiser took her to the ground.
When he released her and she got back to her feet, she drew her duty weapon and pointed it at Kaiser, the video showed.
That’s when another woman entered the house and joined Kaiser’s mother in trying to intervene.
The deputy ordered the women to back up and get out of the way multiple times, the video showed.
Maros used her body to physically block her son from the deputy’s line of fire.
The deputy tried to shove the mother’s arm away and Kaiser became enraged.
He jumped up screaming and picked up a heavy plant from the coffee table and slung it at the deputy, the video showed.
As the suspect attacked, the deputy fired her weapon but instead of hitting Kaiser, she accidentally shot his mother who was standing off to the side.
“Shots fired!” the deputy yelled into her radio as Kaiser came after her.
The video showed he grabbed the deputy and took her to the ground.
“You f--king hurt my mother?” Kaiser screamed. “You f--king hurt my mother!”
The video showed Maros flopping down in the armchair after she was wounded.
Kaiser let go of the deputy and sat back on his knees on the floor in front of the deputy.
That’s when backup arrived and another deputy came through the front door, the video showed.
The video showed the arriving deputy kicked Kaiser and knocked him to the floor.
“Shut the f--k up, mother--ker,” the deputy said as he began grappling with the suspect.
The second deputy pinned Kaiser to the floor face down and then talked the first panicked first deputy down and asked her to help him secure the suspect.
“Now listen, I got his hands, you put him in cuffs,” he told her. “You’re alright.”
Maros was transported to the hospital and underwent 10 procedures related to her wounds, the Greenville News reported.
She remained in the hospital with ongoing medical issues related to the shooting, according to Greenville-based attorney Jake Erwin, who is representing Kaiser.
Kaiser was arrested and later charged with resisting arrest with assault, assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature, and shoplifting, the Greenville News reported.
He remained in custody without bond.
Capt. Brown said that deputy sustained a concussion when she was slammed to the ground.
Erwin told the Greenville News that he believed the deputy’s actions and escalation of the incident led to the shooting of an innocent bystander.
"It is clear to me that this officer, whoever she is, is either new or she’s poorly trained or something, because there is no way she should have escalated that situation the way she did," the attorney said. "The moment that he goes back into house, she calls for backup. She knows backup is coming — why is she continuing to escalate the situation?"
The deputy who shot Maros was placed on paid administrative leave while an investigation is conducted, as is protocol for officer-involved shootings.
"There’s lots of bad behavior all over this video, but the reason she's hurt, the reason this poor woman is in the hospital, is because of how the officer acted," Erwin said.
The Greenville County Sheriff’s Office said the deputy had violated arrest policies during the incident, the Greenville News reported.
The State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) was in charge of the ongoing investigation into the incident.
The sheriff’s department has not identified the deputy.
Watch the incident unfold in the bodycam video below: