Police investigating pepper spray incident at Aynor High School
Aynor, S.C. (WPDE) —
Many people were still talking about what happened during Tuesday night's Aynor Middle School Christmas concert which had many people panicking and even sent a couple people to the hospital. Things got a little crazy during the concert after someone sprayed what was believed to be pepper spray in the air.
This prompted the question of what sort of impacts an incident like this could have on someone's health, or if any charges could potentially be filed.
"Pepper spray is in a group of substances known as riot control agents," said Myrtle Beach physician, Dr. Dennis Rhoads.
Rhoads said the impacts from exposure to pepper spray are something you should take very seriously.
"It causes immediate swelling of your mucus membranes. So if we start from the top and work our way down, if you get it in your eyes, your eyes immediately swell," said Rhoads.
Pepper spray could, in severe instances, could cost you your vision or cause issues with any pre-existing medical conditions.
"If you don’t get it out of the eyes and there’s chronic contact to the eyes over hours, it can actually cause glaucoma. If you have long-term contact with the substance or you have another pre-existing medical condition such as asthma, it can actually cause some pretty severe asthma reactions," said Rhoads.
Legally pepper spray is allowed to be used in South Carolina in self defense, so we went to the Aynor Police Department to find out how Tuesday night’s event factored into that.
When asked if the incident last night was considered a crime, Aynor Police Chief David Thompson said, "At this time we do not know."
Thompson said it's an ongoing investigation.
"The Aynor Police Department is trying to determine the person or persons involved and if the incident was accidental or intentional," said Thompson.
Three people were transported to the hospital Tuesday night. Hazmat crews cleaned up the area and made sure it was safe for school to resume under normal operations Wednesday morning.