Dr. Brian King, the man behind Skinful Halloween, is speaking out on the tragic accident that has sent one party-goer to the hospital with life-threatening injuries.
"We are devastated by the news," the organizer says, later adding, "We've been sending prayers out to the family knowing that this is devastating to them."
According to King, a Mt. Pleasant veterinarian, the man who was arrested following the accident, Matthew Reid Fisher, did not attend Skinful.
King notes that the event had 12 police officers on staff and 33 security guards, including an onsite EMT, who may have been the first person to get to the victim, Beau James Froehlich, following the accident. The ticket to get into the event also noted that attendees should not walk to and from the site.
"We try everything and then some to be as safe with this as possible, knowing that when doing these things there are risks involved," King says. Taxis and limos were on standby at the event to take people home. A shuttle service also took attendees to designated parking spots.
He adds that the location of the event at the Brick House Kitchen was a concern. "It always made me nervous being right there on Folly Road in general," he says. "That's why we put so many safety precautions in place. And that's even why the authorities let us go late, knowing that to get 3,000 people home safely is going to take time."
As far as the future of Skinful is concerned, King says that the event may be moved next year, but no decision has been made. He says that there isn't a location in town that is suitable for the event and moving it out to the country will make it difficult to provide taxi and limo services to party-goers.
"I would hate for this to put a damper on the whole thing. The whole point of this thing is to help raise money for certain local charities," King says. "I would hate to think that this is something that is going to fold the whole thing altogether. I think it is something extremely special for Charleston."
He adds, "We've got a lot of soul searching to do."
According to a News 4 report, the father of the victim, Kenneth Froehlich, is pointing the finger at organziers of Skinful for his son's accident:
"I'm glad my son's not dead, but the fact is we have to stop having parties like this," Kenneth Froehlich said.
According to Maj. Jim Brady of the Charleston County Sheriff's Department, "it appears that both individuals had just left the Skinful Halloween event held at 1575 Folly Road, based on initial statements made to investigators on scene."
The incident report notes that Fisher has a prior DUI from 2002.
After the accident, the report says that Fisher then drove to a nearby fire station.