Bond Denied for Accused Florence Airport Shooter


According to our news partner, WPDE:

FLORENCE, S.C. (WPDE) —A judge has denied bond for the man accused of fatally shooting a police officer over the weekend at the Florence Regional Airport.

James Edward Bell is charged with murder, discharging a firearm into the vehicle and possession of a weapon during a violent crime. He was arraigned on those charges Tuesday.

The 37-year-old is accused in the killing of Florence Regional Airport Police Officer Jackson Winkeler, 26, during a traffic stop Sunday morning.

The warrants say Officer Winkeler initiated a traffic stop on a 2014 Chrysler 200 on airport property. During the stop,the warrants say Bell shot and killed Officer Winkeler.

By the time additional officers arrived, Winkeler was already lying dead on the ground outside of his vehicle, according to the warrants. They say Officer Winkeler's gun was missing and not on the scene. The suspect's car was gone, too.

Officers found an additional empty .9mm handgun near Winkeler's body that didn't belong to him and had more than 30 spent shell casings. The warrant says the officer's vehicle had a bullet hole near the driver's side mirror.

Deputies with the Florence County Sheriff's Office found the suspect in his car near Highway 52. That's also when they found Winkeler's gun and a magazine consistent with the additional handgun left near Officer Winkeler's body.