- Associated Press - Wednesday, June 17, 2015

AIKEN, S.C. (AP) - The Aiken Standard has filed Freedom of Information Act requests with the South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division and other investigating agencies to try to gather more details about the case of an off-duty Aiken County Sheriff’s Deputy charged in the death of his wife.

Deputy Matthew Blakley, 23, was arrested Sunday and charged with involuntary manslaughter, The Aiken Standard reported (https://bit.ly/1Ikez4s). Police said Candace Blakley, 24, died from a gunshot wound to the head Saturday after being found bleeding from a bathtub. Matthew Blakley told officers he shot his wife by accident. He has since been fired.

The newspaper is requesting access to dash-cam video from the vehicles of the responding officers as well as the release of body-cam footage. A law passed this month allows investigators to decide whether to release body-worn camera footage if it serves public interest.

Few details have been released in the case.

When North Augusta officers arrived, Blakley ran outside with blood on his hands, identifying himself as a deputy and telling them he had shot his wife in an accident, according to the police report.

Another man, who identified himself as Matthew Murphy, was in the home and also had blood on his hands, according to the report. He told officers that the victim was in the bathroom and dead.

The involuntary manslaughter charge accuses Blakley of showing reckless disregard to the safety of his wife. It carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison but doesn’t require jail time with a conviction.

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Information from: Aiken Standard, https://www.aikenstandard.com

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