Trooper Mark Hunter Coates

Trooper Mark Hunter Coates

South Carolina Highway Patrol, South Carolina

End of Watch Friday, November 20, 1992

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Mark Hunter Coates

Corporal Mark Coates was shot and killed after stopping a car for weaving in traffic on I-95 near the Georgia border.

During the traffic stop the subject began to struggle with Corporal Coates and they both fell to the ground. The man fired a .22 caliber handgun into Corporal Coates' chest, but the round was stopped by his vest.

Corporal Coates was able to force the man off of him and return fire, striking the him five times in the chest with his .357 caliber revolver. As he retreated for cover and to radio for backup, the man fired another shot. The round struck Trooper Coates in the left armpit and traveled into his heart.

The man survived the incident and was sentenced to life in prison.

Corporal Coates was a U.S. Marine Corps veteran and had served with the South Carolina Highway patrol for five years. He was survived by his wife, two sons, two step-daughters, parents, sister and brother.

Bio

  • Age 31
  • Tour 5 years
  • Badge 709
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; .22 caliber
  • Offender Sentenced to life

Most Recent Reflection

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I visited the South Carolina Law Enforcement Officers Memorial at the Capitol complex in Columbia earlier this week to look for your name on the wall. I did the same thing two years ago on my very first trip to Columbia. I became a Missouri trooper just a little over a month after you were murdered and your incident had a profound impact on me. I never knew you and have never met those who loved you, but I want to thank you for your service and sacrifice. As I approach 30 years of being a trooper, I want your loved ones to know that you are not forgotten. May God bless those who remain behind and miss you every day.

Major D.A. Flannigan
Missouri State Highway Patrol

January 28, 2022

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