Police suspend search for carjacking suspect

A Briarcliffe Acres officer sits at Hwy 90 and Environmental Parkway as part of the perimeter along Hwy 90 as the search for a wanted suspect continues. / Graeme Moore

A multi-jurisdictional crime spree Monday morning prompted a manhunt and police perimeter in Horry County for much of Monday afternoon. However, hours of searching for Robert Michael Barnes yielded nothing, Horry County Police Sgt. Robert Kegler said.

Barnes, 29, from Ohio, is described as 5'11", 160lbs with hazel eyes and brown hair.

Around 1:00 p.m., Horry County police officers set up a perimeter from Watertower Road to International Boulevard along Highway 22 and to points west to Highway 90 to search for Barnes. Officers located a stolen vehicle in a deeply wooded area of International Boulevard around 12:30 after a brief chase.

Police think Barnes, who is wanted in Ohio, stole the car during a carjacking in North Myrtle Beach at the 2nd Ave North Tiger Mart around 11:00 a.m. North Myrtle Beach officials say Barnes left a van, reported stolen from Ohio, at the Tiger Mart and then drove the carjacked Toyota Avalon across the Robert Edge Parkway.

From there, they think Barnes robbed a CVS at 38th Avenue North in Myrtle Beach around 12:00 p.m. Myrtle Beach Police Cpt. David Knipes said the suspect stole prescription drugs and then left in the Toyota.

Minutes later, Horry County Police officers spotted the Toyota traveling at a high rate of speed on Robert Grissom Parkway, and a chase began.

Officers chased the suspect vehicle down Robert Grissom Parkway and onto International Drive, but the officers lost sight of the vehicle. However, it was found a short time later, approximately two miles down International Road from the Highway 90 entrance.

Bloodhounds searched for a few hours within the perimeter, as SLED's helicopter flew above, but by 6:00 p.m., police had called the search with no sign of Barnes.

Anyone with information on Barnes' whereabouts should call 911.

Stay with for information on this developing story.