Man accused of ripping sprinkler from ceiling, assaulting officer at Upstate hospital

South Carolina News

EASLEY, SC (WSPA) – A man was arrested after he reportedly damaged a sprinkler and assaulted a security officer at Baptist Easley Hospital on Sunday.

According to an Easley Police Department report, officers were called to the hospital at around 6:15 p.m. Sunday in regards to a man ripping a sprinkler head from the ceiling in the emergency room.

When the officers arrived at the hospital, staff members were evacuating the building and several security officers were involved in a struggle to hold a man on the ground.

The officers identified the man as Randall Jeffery Pierce, 52, who was then escorted by police to a patrol vehicle.

Once Pierce was secured, the officers went back inside the building and saw a constant flow of water was starting to flood the emergency room area.

Officers and other first responders arrived on-scene to safely evacuate and secure the area, as well as EMS transport vehicles that were called in to help tend to patients who could not be left outside during the evacuation.

According to the report, the officers spoke with a security officer at the hospital who said he was assaulted by Pierce after he “knowingly damaged the sprinkler system.”

The security officer said he approached Pierce, who then hit him in the face, as well as kicked him while trying to get away from the security officers.

Pierce was charged with third-degree assault and malicious injury to real property more than $10,000.

Prisma Health-Upstate officials released the following statement Sunday night, following the reported incident:

“Damage to a single sprinkler head at Prisma Health Baptist Easley Hospital’s emergency department caused water to pool on the floor in a small section of that area and the fire alarm to activate.  As a precaution, the emergency department was temporarily evacuated. The water was cleaned up, the Easley Fire Department gave the all clear, and the emergency department resumed normal operations.”

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