ROCK HILL, S.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) – The Rock Hill community is mourning the loss of retired Rock Hill Police Lieutenant Larry Vaughan as officials work to find out what lead up to his murder.
Those who knew him best say he touched the lives of everyone he came in contact with.
Dallas Brock and Susan Archie are sending thoughts and prayers to the former lieutenant and the department he served for more than 30 years. “I’m really sorry for his family. It’s a terrible thing to happen,” Brock said. “Whoever has done it needs to pay the consequences.”
Authorities say it started as a physical altercation inside his apartment on Main Street with 27-year-old Evan Hawthorne.
Right now, results from an autopsy are pending and Hawthorne is behind bars charged with murder.
Records show Hawthorne is a former Chester County deputy and was fired in 2019 for driving under the influence.
“Why? What was the purpose of a deputy killing a lieutenant?” Archie said.
Right now the connection between Vaughan and Hawthorne is being investigated.
Video shows the scene around 3:15 p.m. as several law enforcement agencies responded to the Anderson Apartment building.
“We were sitting here watching everything that was going on, and we could pretty much hear the policemen talking about it as they were walking by,” Brock said.
The Rock Hill Police Department shared Vaughan’s many accomplishments on Facebook as a patrol officer, patrol supervisor, and SWAT commander among other things.
He won numerous awards and contributed tirelessly to the community.
In a statement, Rock Hill City Mayor John Gettys says, “We remember with gratitude the work of lieutenant Larry Vaughan. He often served at our council meetings and was always a reassuring presence.”
The York County Sheriff’s office is leading the investigation and has not said what lead up to Vaughan’s death. Right now they say all of that is being investigated.
“I’m sorry that it happened to one of their own. You always hate to see a policeman go down. It’s a sad, sad day,” Archie said.