Family: Missing woman's body found in Berkeley County

AWENDAW, S.C. (WCIV) -- Berkeley County Rescue Squad crews are recovering a body near where a woman disappeared after officials say she was involved in a high-speed chase last week. Family members and investigators identified the body as the missing woman.

According to Rescue Squad Chief Bill Salisbury, 52-year-old Laura Lynch, of Wando, ran from the car after it wrecked on Green Bay Road in Huger. Salisbury said they searched the area Thursday with K-9 units but did not find Lynch.

However, on Monday morning the search for Lynch began again and a body was found around 10 a.m. just a few hundred feet from where the car crashed. Salisbury said it appears Lynch died of natural causes, adding that she had several health problems.

"She was found this morning at about ten minutes after ten. And she was probably 150 or 200 yards from where the car was found," said Salisbury.

The driver of the car, 42-year-old Michael Anthony Browder, was taken into custody Sunday morning and information from his interview led deputies back to the site of the crash, Salisbury said. He was released on a personal recognizance bond on Monday.

"Rest in peace, Laura," said Teresa Taylor, who's having a tough time handling the news of her friend's death.

"She was a good person. She loved her family. She was very into her family. That's why we were so surprised that nobody had heard from her. 'Cause she would not go without calling her son especially," said Taylor.

She says Lynch had health problems. And she isn't sure why she would be traveling with Browder.

"I don't know how common it was that they were together. But I know they've been friends for a very long time. If you want to call that a friend," said Taylor.

On Sunday, deputies and rescue crews searched the area on horseback and on foot, he said. Another search by helicopter was planned for Monday.

Mt. Pleasant police officials said they were involved in the chase that began late Thursday morning. Charleston County Dispatch officials said the chase began near the intersection of Highway 17 and Oakland Market.

Officials said the chase began after the driver failed to stop for reckless driving and evaded the patrol officer. The driver of the car led police up Highway 17 to Highway 41 and into Berkeley County, where the chase was handed off.

Charleston County deputies said they were assisting the Berkeley County Sheriff's Office in the chase, but officials believe they lost sight of the suspect vehicle.

Capt. Rick Ollic with the Berkeley County Sheriff's Office said that while Mt. Pleasant police started the chase, it was called off once they lost sight of the suspect vehicle. He said police gave BCSO deputies a general area where the suspect was last seen off Steed Creek Road.

Investigators say it took about 50 people to search the entire area on Sunday and Monday morning to be able to find Laura Lynch.