MANNING, S.C. — A South Carolina drycleaning clerk suffered a gunshot wound to the head during a robbery last month and survived to tell the tale on NBC’s Today show yesterday. A nationwide manhunt for the gunman is underway.
According to police reports, the man walked into Manning’s City Laundry & Cleaners at about 11:30 a.m. on Aug. 22. He fired a shot into the ceiling and told 23-year-old clerk Heather Brammer to give him the money in the register.
He then told to her go to the back of the store, where he made Brammer lie face-down on the floor and fired a shot — execution-style — into the back of her head. Leaving her for dead, the attacker fled the scene, police said.
Brammer regained consciousness after about 20 minutes, experiencing blurred vision and numbness in her limbs. She was able to drag herself to the front of the store and call 911. “He shot me in the back of the head,” she told the dispatcher. “I can’t see straight.”
Paramedics arrived in minutes, thanks to a customer who had walked in on the crime scene while Brammer was unconscious and left again, thinking the gunman might still be in the store.
The bullet lodged in the thickest part of Brammer’s skull, just millimeters from causing what could have been a fatal injury. After a few days in a local hospital, she was able to provide a police sketch artist with a full description of the gunman and additional details of the crime.
The man, she told police, appeared to be an ordinary customer when he first came into the store at about 10:30 a.m., Brammer said. He picked out a tuxedo from City’s rental selections and said he would return at 1:00 p.m. for a fitting. Less than an hour later, he returned, brandishing a gun.
Brammer described the suspect as a six-foot tall black male with a goatee, who wore a “’do rag” at the time of the incident. Brammer also offered a description of the man’s getaway vehicle — a green, four-door Mitsubishi, likely a Galant.
Police believe the man acted alone and haven’t found the weapon. “This guy is dangerous — I mean, extremely dangerous,” Manning Police Chief Randy Garrett told Columbia, S.C.'s WIS-TV News. “This was senseless. She didn’t resist. She did exactly what he asked. There was no reason to do what he did.”
Brammer appeared on NBC’s Today Sept. 8 with her husband, Alex, to discuss the ordeal and broadcast a police sketch of the suspect as part of a nationwide manhunt. To see the interview, click here.
Anyone with information about the crime should call the Manning Police Department at 803-435-8859 or Crime Stoppers at 843-667-TIPS or 866-369-TIPS. Callers can leave tips anonymously.