Sheriff: Manslaughter suspect in custody after manhunt, lockdowns in Spartanburg Co.

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INMAN, SC (FOX Carolina) –

Four Inman area schools were on lockdown Thursday in connection with the search for a wanted suspect.

Spartanburg County dispatchers said they were serving warrants in the area on Penland Road and the suspect fled into a wooded area. Sheriff Chuck Wright said the suspect was wanted in connection with a negligent homicide out of New York.

Wright identified the suspect as Jemark Ballenger, who he said was wanted for vehicular manslaughter.

The Broome County Sheriff’s Office in New York said the manslaughter charge against Ballenger stems from a 2016 fatal collision. According to Brooke County deputies, Ballenger was previously convicted of a vehicular manslaughter charge but it was overturned in an appeal.

A K-9 team assisted in the search for Ballenger, along with the Greenville County Sheriff’s Office’s helicopter.

Just after 3:30 p.m. Wright confirmed Ballenger was taken into custody.

A spokesperson for Spartanburg District 1 said Chapman High School, Mabry Middle, Inman Elementary and Inman Intermediate were placed on lockdown. The schools were operating normally but no one is allowed to enter the building.

As of 2:40 p.m., Inman Elementary and Inman Intermediate were cleared to release. Around 3:30 p.m., the district said all lockdowns were lifted.

Stay with FOX Carolina for details on this developing story.

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