Rep. Pitts Recovering

Representative Mike Pitts had a heart attack this weekend while on a hunting trip out west. The South Carolina House District 14 Representative was recovering in a hospital in Missoula, Montana. Representative Pitts told WLBG it’s “No fist fights or heavy lifting for a while,” noting he had very little permanent damage, saying he should be fine if he follows instructions.



Railroad Crossing Closings

Several street sections in the Clinton area are being closed this week for repair to CSX Railroad crossings.

An announcement from Southern Commercial Development states that starting at 7:00 this morning, Woodrow Street and Thornwell Street will be closed at their railroad crossings between US 76, Carolina Avenue and Main Street. Starting at 7:00 tomorrow morning, Broad Street will be closed between Carolina Avenue and Main Street. Also tomorrow, US 76, Carolina Avenue in Downtown Clinton, will be closed between Broad Street and Thornwell Street.

Outside Clinton, Fuller Road is to be closed this week between Interstate 26 and Renno Road.

Signs are to be in place to assist motorists in making detours of these road closings.

LDHS Band to State Championship

The LDHS Raider Band this weekend earned the right to perform in a sixth consecutive 4A State Marching Band Championship.  Of the 14 bands who competed in the South Carolina Band Directors Association’s 4A Upperstate Championship, the Raiders finished in 2nd place and qualified as a high-seed for the finale next weekend.  In the final tally from Boiling Springs this past Saturday, the Raiders were the top scoring ensemble in at the captions of Music Performance and Visual Performance.  This led to the second highest score of the day as the runner-up for the Upper-state Championship.

Saturday’s performance resulted in the Raider Band’s historic placement in the 4A Upper-state Championship.  It has been a season of success that his witnessed many caption awards, first place finishes, and almost two Grand Championships in one day.  Earlier, the Raiders introduced themselves to the nation by qualifying for Finals in a Bands of America Regional Championship in Jacksonville, Alabama.

The Raider Band and staff ask the members of our community to join them on the campus of Spring Valley High School next weekend.  They will take the field in Harry Parone Stadium at 8:45 p.m.

This Friday, for senior night in the Varsity football game versus Easley, the Raider Band will perform their full Fall production entitled, “RITUAL.”

1st Degree Domestic Assault

Laurens Police arrested a man Saturday on charges of an assault on his girlfriend last Thursday. 25-year-old Maxavious LadariousValentine of 118 Hunter’s Court, Laurens was charged with 1st Degree Domestic Violence.

A warrant cites an investigation of Officer Napier as indicating that on October 18th Valentine committed Domestic Violence in the 1st Degree by striking the victim in the face multiple times with a closed fist and by using both hands to strangle the victim, which impeded the flow of blood and oxygen to the brain. Valentine is also accused of breaking the victim’s cell phone, which was her only means of summoning emergency responders. The subject and victim reportedly lived together at the incident location.

Maxavious Valentine remained in custody this morning with bond set at $10,000.

Victim 10 weeks Pregnant

Clinton Police made an arrest alleging a 2nd Degree Domestic Assault yesterday. 22-year-old Kierre Lamar Hamilton of 100 Clinton Manor Drive, Clinton is accused of an assault in an apartment at Clinton Manor. He’s accused of placing his hands around the victim’s neck, choking her and impeding her airflow, and of throwing her down onto the bed. Officer Devot states the victim is 10 weeks pregnant. Kierre Hamilton remained in custody this morning with a cash or surety bond set at $5,000.

Threats Before Her Child

A 2nd Degree Domestic Violence warrant was served this weekend from an alleged assault last Thursday. Laurens Police charged 33-year-old Brian Spencer Hunter of 404 West Pitts Street, Clinton with 2nd Degree Domestic Violence. A warrant cites an investigation by Officer Blackstock as indicating that on October 19th Hunter slapped the victim across the face, causing minor abrasions beside her eye. Hunter also allegedly made threats of bodily harm in the presence of the victim’s one-year-old son and damaged the victim’s cell phone, depriving her of her only means to contact emergency services. The victim fled the scene in the 200 block of Spring Street, in fear of her safety.

Brian “B” Hunter was released Sunday morning on posting a $10,000 cash or surety bond.

False Report & Assault Alleged

Laurens Police arrested a man Saturday on charges of a domestic assault on Deering Street in August. 44-year-old Carnell Cornelius Mosely of 399 Holmes Street was charged with Domestic Violence 2nd Degree and with Giving False Report to Police.

A warrant citing an investigation of Officer Blackstock states that on August 24th Mosely struck the victim with a closed fist several times about the head and body, causing minor injury. He also allegedly pushed her into the wall, blocked the door to the bathroom, preventing her from leaving and caused her to fear for her safety.

A second warrant states that the investigation of Sgt. Sellers indicates that this past Friday at 102 Bolt Drive, Mosely falsified his identity during the course of an investigation into a domestic violence case.

Carnell Cornelius Mosley was released Saturday morning on cash or surety bonds totaling $10,465.

Possession with Intent to Distribute

Friday, the Laurens County Sheriff’s Office arrested 57-year-old Robin Wood of 3552 Warrior Creek Church Road, Gray Court on charges that included a drug possession with intent to charge. Deputy Roberson issued a ticket initially charging Wood with Driving under Suspension at 5:00 o’clock Friday afternoon. Later, Wood was also charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance with Intent to Distribute. Robin Wood remained in custody this morning with cash or surety bonds totaling $20,647.50.

Stolen Pistol Found in Traffic Stop

Receiving Stolen Goods was the charge Laurens Police had Friday for 50-year-old James Brett Harte of 1109 Old Bush River Road, Chapin. He’s accused of being in possession of a trailer hitch which had been stolen and on October 5th at 1011 North Harper Street, of allegedly pawning it. James Brett Harte remained in custody this morning with a cash or surety bond set at $1,000.

Police Chase & Other Traffic Charges

Charges from a Police Chase were served Friday following a traffic arrest by the Laurens County Sheriff’s Office last Thursday night. 51-year-old Stacy Lynn McKenzie of 10 Stover Hurley Drive, Gray Court was initially issued tickets by Deputy Beau Roberson charging him with Driving under Suspension, Improper Vehicle License and Operating an Uninsured Vehicle at 10:00 Thursday night on Beaverdam Creek at Wallace Lodge Roads.

A warrant was served Friday charging Mr. McKenzie with Failure to Stop for Blue Lights. It cites an investigation by Deputy Roberson as indicating that on October 18th McKenzie failed to stop the motor vehicle he was driving when signaled to do so by blue lights, resulting in a vehicle chase.

Stacy Lynn McKenzie was released Sunday morning on bonds totaling $6,212.50.

Assault and Malicious Damage

The Sheriff’s Office arrested 17-year-old Kendravious Lanard-Tyre James of 112 Ron McNair Road, Mountville Friday. Deputy Galloway issued tickets charging James with 3rd Degree Assault and Battery and with Malicious Damage at 4:11 Friday afternoon at his residence. Kendravious James was released yesterday afternoon on posting two $1,087 bonds.

Football Scores from Friday 10-19-2018


  • Emerald 34 – Clinton 19
  • TL Hanna 56 – Laurens 24
  • Wardlaw 60 – Laurens Academy 12 (Thursday).


  • Ware Shoals 38 Calhoun Falls 12
    Whitmire 34 McCormick 22
  • Silver Bluff 17 Ninety Six 0
    Abbeville 31 Saluda 13
  • Union County 28 Newberry 21
    Woodruff 48 Mid-Carolina 3
  • Woodmont 28 Easley 21
    Westside 28 Greenwood 17
    Wade Hampton 56 JL Mann 0

To see the scores statewide fir all teams in a classification click on the class below.

Another Shoplifting Charge & 5th Meth Offense

A warrant alleging a 5th offense of a Methamphetamine possession was served following a Shoplifting investigation in Laurens yesterday. Laurens City Police arrested 38-year-old Carrie Jane Conner of 625 Whitmire Highway, Joanna on charges that included Shoplifting – Enhanced and 5th offense Possession of Less than One Gram of Meth.

One warrant, citing an investigation by Sgt. Gallo, states that Ms. Conner concealed merchandise at Walmart yesterday with intent to permanently deprive the victim of the retail value of the items. It notes prior convictions of Shoplifting. A $10,000 bond was set on that charge.

A second warrant, also citing an investigation by Sgt. Gallo, states that during a shoplifting incident at 922 East Main Street yesterday Ms. Conner was found to be in possession of approximately .28 gram of methamphetamine. This was said to be a 5th offense of Meth Possession for Conner. A cash or surety bond on the Meth charge was set at $30,000.

Carrie Jane Conner remained in the Laurens County Detention Center this morning with bonds totaling $40,000.

Thomas Mechanical Again in SC Top 25

A Laurens business has, again this year, been ranked as one of the fastest growing companies in South Carolina. Thomas Mechanical placed 19th in the S.C. Top 25 Fastest Growing Companies Awards Luncheon last week in the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center.

Thomas Mechanical provides a wide range of construction and maintenance services including HVAC, process piping (chilled water, steam, hot water, cooling water, compressed air, gases and chemical), equipment installation, metal fabrication and fire protection (ordinary hazard EFSR, fire pumps, tanks). Thomas Mechanical’s team possesses complete turn-key capabilities including project conception, design (including professional engineer stamped drawings for permitting), construction and commissioning.

Now in its 17th year, the South Carolina 25 Fastest Growing Companies competition recognizes the achievements of top-performing private and publicly owned companies that have contributed to the Palmetto State’s economy through exceptional increases in revenues and employment. The contest was founded to honor the state’s most dynamic businesses and their contributions to our state’s economic vitality.

The S.C. Top 25 Fastest Growing Companies program was presented by the Capital Corporation and co-sponsored by Integrated Media Publishing (publisher of Greenville Business Magazine, Columbia Business Monthly and Charleston Business Magazine), BDSO USSA LLP, PNC Bank, Keenan Suggs, HUB and Womble Bond Dickinson, LLP.

MedTrust Medical Transport was named the #1 Fastest-Growing company in the state for this year. Diesel Laptops came in 2nd, Frampton Construction was 3rd, The Hiring Group was 4th and Clear Touch Interactive, Inc. placed 5th.

At the 19th fastest growing company in the state this year, Thomas Mechanical was listed ahead of other top 25 companies like Clayton Construction Company, Linden Construction and Duke Brands.


ACT Scores for School District 56

The ACT test is a national college admissions exam for testing students in English, math, reading and science. In a report on the results of ACT texting, Laurens County School District 56 notes that South Carolina is one of seventeen states that tests all students when they’re Juniors. The report states that students scored lower this year across the nation and across South Carolina than the previous year’s graduating class.

Students’ mean composite score across the state dropped 4 tenths of a point. Here in District 56, the drop was 3 tenths of a point, with a score of 16.7. The highest possible score would be 36. District 56 had about 30 fewer test-takers in the “Class of 2018” compared to the previous year’s class.

District 56 scores on the English portion of ACT declined 1/10th of a point, compared to 2/10th statewide. District 56 Math scores increased 1/10th of a point, compared to a statewide decline of 4/10ths of a point.


Promoting Healthier Lives

We usually think of Blue Cross Blue Shield as insurance, but the Blue Cross Blue Shield of South Carolina Foundation deals with other health-related matters.

Foundation Executive Director Erika Kirby was in Laurens yesterday updating the Laurens Rotary Club with information on the work the foundation is involved with across South Carolina.

She said that key areas the foundation is involved with include free medical clinics around the state, such as the Good Sheppard Free Medical Clinic here in Laurens County. Kirby said Good Sheppard sees some 1,800 patients a year and is one of 45 clinics across the state that address health needs of some 41,000 residents, providing free health care with an estimated value of about $500 million a year.

Erika Kirby said the foundation also assists Federally Qualified Health Care centers and is also working to improve dental health for South Carolina residents.

She also spoke of the foundation’s concern with the rise of suicide across the country in recent years and said South Carolina has had one of the more significant increases in suicide.

Ms. Kirby said the Blue Cross Blue Shield Foundation also works with some 30 Eat Smart, Move More programs across the state. One of those is operating here in Laurens County.

She also told about grants the foundation is offering for schools, assisting them as they innovate programs to encourage students to choose healthier foods to eat and to get more physical activity, needed for good health. Here in Laurens County, Ms. Kirby said that School District 56 has won a $25,000 grant to help fund programs to encourage healthier eating and more physical activity by students in all five District 56 Schools.

Council Go-Ahead for CPW Bonds

Laurens City Council this week approved a measure to provide funding for natural gas line replacement. The unanimous vote Tuesday evening was on Ordinance 10-18-01, requested by the Laurens Commission of Public Works. The measure authorizes the CPW to issue up to $3 million of combined utility systems revenue bonds. The upcoming phase of natural gas line replacement is expected to cost about $2 million.


Reading under the Stars Tonight

With the Laurens District 55 Raiders traveling to Anderson this evening to play T.L. Hanna High School, K.C. Hanna stadium at Laurens High is being used for a “Reading Under the Stars” event. Students and families are invited to Reading Under the Stars tonight from 6:30 to 8:30. Admission is free.

The event on the Raider football field is to promote a love of literacy, with families gathering together and reading. District 55 Assistant Superintendent of Teaching and Learning, Dr. Ameca Thomas, said “We hope that this event will decrease screen time and increase quality family time while bonding through books. The theme is ‘Keeping reading alive in Laurens 55.”

In organizing the event, the Department of Teaching and Learning purchased books to giveaway at Reading Under the Stars. The first 55 children in attendance tonight are to receive a new book.

Everyone is encouraged to wear their favorite Raider Gear. Families will need to bring blankets, flashlights (optional), and books. There will be guest readers and activities. People of all ages are welcome. As a family event, adults attending should accompany students.

Backup plans in event of rain are to move “Reading under the Stars” to the commons area of LDHS.

Narcotics & Other Controlled Drugs

Two drug charges were served yesterday following a midday arrest by the Laurens County Sheriff’s Office. 20-year-old Z’Carias Ke’Untrioze Stewart of A-2, 201 Reedy Fork Road, Laurens was charged with unauthorized Possession of a Narcotic Drug in Schedule I and Possession of a Controlled Substance from multiple schedules. Mr. Stewart was held overnight in the Laurens County Detention Center, awaiting a bond hearing on the two charges.

Traffic Charges & Held for Warrants

A 51-year-old Gray Court area man was arrested at 10:00 last night near the intersection of Beaverdam and Wallace Lodge Roads on three traffic tickets from Deputy Beau Roberson. The Man was also being held, pending other charges from the Sheriff’s Office.