Swinging Blunt Object at Victim

A 1st Degree Assault from earlier this month was charged yesterday on a woman Laurens City Police arrested early yesterday morning.  21-year-old Courtney Kenyada Williams of Unit 234 at 265 Joy Drive, Laurens was initially issued tickets charging her with Driving under Suspension and Simple Possession of Marijuana at 1:24 yesterday morning at or near the intersection of Sullivan Street with East Farley. Later in the day she was served with a warrant charging Assault and Battery 1st Degree. Lt. Shane Martin states an investigation indicates that on April 3rd she physically assaulted the victim by retrieving a dark colored blunt object from her vehicle and by swinging this item at the victim multiple times during the April 3rd incident at 218 Spring Street.  A $25,000 cash or surety bond was set on the 1st Degree Assault charge yesterday. Additional bonds of $1,272 were set on the other two charges.

3rd Degree Assault

Laurens Police yesterday charged 18-year-old Tavier Naquan Hill of 109 Stuart Street, Laurens with Assault and Battery 3rd Degree. Officer Gainey states that investigation of Sgt. Charles Simmons indicates the defendant physically attacked the victim with his fists, causing injury. This allegedly occurred on April 16th at 109 Stuart Street.  Tavier Naquan Hill was being held, pending a bond hearing today.

Arrest on One Charge, Now Held for New York

Clinton Public Safety yesterday arrested 52-year-old Marietta Lee Potts of an apartment at 1321 South Broad Street on charges of Stealing Utilities from the city. Officer Wilkes states that on April 19th Ms. Potts stole electricity from the City by using an electric meter that had been taken from another apartment. A $250 PR bond was set, but Ms. Potts remained in custody this morning with a hold for Probation in New York.

False Return at Wal-Mart Alleged

A man arrested following a transaction in the Laurens Wal-Mart Wednesday was charged by Laurens Police yesterday with Obtaining Goods under False Pretense and with an Enhanced charge of Fraudulent Return. 37-year-old Jacques Isaiah Copeland of 465 Vaughn Street, Greenwood is accused of taking a blow-dryer from inside Wal-Mart Tuesday and returning it to the service desk, receiving a gift card for the value of the dryer. It’s alleged that after a “stop” was placed on that card, he returned to the store yesterday trying to get cash or another card issued. Jacques Isaiah Copeland remained in the Laurens County Detention Center this morning with cash or surety bonds totaling $4,000 on the two charges.

Buster is Pet of the Week


Say hello to Buster. He’s the WLBG Pet of the Week. Buster is a 1 year old black lab mix. He has a naturally friendly nature.

And he needs a home. Fast. The shelter is full……past full. If you or someone you know would like to have a good dog…………please save Buster.

Find out more by calling Laurens County (SC) Animal Control (864)682-4935.

And please SHARE. Can we save them all? No. But please……….let’s save this one.

City Fire Chief Discusses Great ISO Rating for Laurens

The Laurens City Fire Department recently received a rare honor, with news from the Insurance Service Organization that the city is being reclassified with an ISO rating of ‘One.’  At this week’s April meeting of Laurens City Council, Fire Chief Bill Hughes noted that only 132 fire departments of 48,000 across the country have received this low rating. This is what insurance companies use to determine fire insurance rates, so the lower the number generally means the lower price residents and businesses pay for fire insurance.

ISO ratings are based on many factors, including water availability for fighting along with training and other preparations of the fire department. Fire Chief Bill Hughes told council Tuesday evening that his department has been busy testing equipment during April and that this will continue through May. He said that 15,000 feet of hose will be tested along with truck pump tests that will be conducted at the Ceramtec pond.

County Council Acquiring Four New Fire Station Locations

Laurens County Council is continuing its efforts to acquire property on which to build four new fire stations around the county. The four locations range from an area between Mountville and Clinton to an area west of Waterloo and other areas into northern Laurens County, where new fire stations are to be constructed to cover areas with neighborhoods that are more than five road miles from the nearest fire station. These areas are classified as a “ten” by the ISO, which is the same as having no fire protection. County Council is working to ensure an ISO rating of ‘five’ in the rural areas of the county.

Attempt to Defraud County of Funds

The Sheriff’s Office is investigating an attempted wire fraud where Laurens County was to be the victim. Deputy Richey responded to Hillcrest Square yesterday to investigate. The County Treasurer reported learning of an attempt to obtain county funds. It was discovered that someone was using a county official’s name with a fraudulent email account. The offender was apparently attempting to have $68,100 transferred from Laurens County funds to a bank in Illinois. The matter is under investigation.

Pointing & Presenting Firearm

Charges of holding a Kalashnikov-style weapon on another person were served yesterday on a man who had been arrested Tuesday by Laurens City Police.  29-year-old Brandon Reshod Powers of 104 Jackson Street, Laurens is now charged with Pointing and Presenting a Firearm at a Person. Sgt. Jody Thibodeau states that the investigation of Sgt. James Nolen indicates that on April 19th Mr. Powers pointed and presented a Kalashnikov-style rifle or pistol at the victim during an argument on Marion Street in Laurens.

Brandon Reshod ‘Shod” Powers was released on a $20,000 surety bond.

Two Teens Charged with Conspiracy

Conspiracy charges were served yesterday on two teens arrested Tuesday.

Laurens City Police charged 17-year-old Jonathan Lee Craine of 101 Pinewood Terrace, Laurens and 17-year-old Jedadiaha Lee Lawson of 1466 Old State Highway, Grayson, Kentucky with Shoplifting and Conspiracy to Commit Shoplifting .

In each warrant, Sgt. Thibodeau cites the investigation of Lt. Detective Jared Hunnicutt as indicating the defendant conspired with a co-defendant to ‘shoplift’ a case of Budweiser beer from the Lil Cricket at 529 Church Street on April 19th. The conspiracy to ‘shoplift’ allegedly occurred at Craine’s residence, 101 Pinewood Terrace Drive in Laurens. Each defendant is accused of then shoplifting a case of Budweiser beer from the Lil Cricket with his co-defendant.

Cash or surety bonds were set totaling $1,650 on the two charges for each teen. Jonathan Lee Craine and Jebadiaha Lee Lawson remained in the Laurens County Detention Center this morning.

Man Captured After Escaping thru Hole in Bathroom Floor

A man who was served with Bench Warrants Tuesday from convictions earlier this year was served yesterday with additional charges stemming from his arrest. Sheriff’s Sgt. Bryan Willard reported that as he was pulling into 123 My Way Drive, Gray Court at 11:34 Tuesday morning regarding the Bench Warrants he observed a gold-colored car backing out from the residence as a slow speed. Sgt. Willard stated the car continued moving slowly backward after commands to stop, and he noted a rear-seat passenger was pointing toward the road in a hurried fashion as if he was telling the driver to go. The car stopped and the reportedly exited and began to run towards a nearby brown trailer. Sgt. Willard secured the scene while awaiting assistance to locate the subject. The car driver reportedly explained that the passenger has pressed his leg down causing him to accelerate. The fleeing man reportedly left his small boy and girl behind in the car. Later, armed with a search warrant, deputies went to the nearby brown trailer and found the man barricaded in a bathroom, refusing to come out. He was allegedly claiming not to be himself, but a cousin of his. As officers forced their way into the bathroom, the subject reportedly went through a hole in the bathroom floor, injuring himself with a cut to his head in the process. As he attempted to run from officers he reportedly tripped and fell into a wood chip pile behind the trailer. Deputies then took him into custody. After a visit to the hospital for a medical check-up to the cut on his head, the subject was taken to the detention center.

28-year-old Joshua Allen Knight of 123 My Way Drive, Gray Court was served with three Bench Warrants from Magistrate’s Court with sentences from February and March on charges of Driving under Suspension, Public Disorderly and Driving without a License.

Yesterday the Sheriff’s Office added two new charges with warrants alleging Giving False Information to Law Enforcement and Resisting Arrest. In those warrants Sgt. Willard states that on April 19th Joshua Allen Knight did knowingly give false information to law enforcement by claiming to be his cousin in order to avoid arrest, and that he willfully opposed and/or resisted the lawful arrest by a law enforcement officer in that he attempted to flee and had to be forcibly restrained by officers.

Cash or surety bonds were set totaling $11,000 on the two charges. Joshua Allen Knight remained in the Laurens County Detention Center this morning.

Arrest Alleges Pawning Stolen Jewelry

A pawning of jewelry back in January was noted yesterday in a woman’s arrest by Clinton Public Safety. 21-year-old Stephanie Lynn Cone of 2741 Highway 66, Whitmire was charged with Possession of Stolen Goods and with Obtaining Property under False Pretense. Lt. Cathy Anderson states that on January 21st 2016 Stephanie Cone obtained money from Pawn Werks on Sloan Street in the amount of $70 for the pawning of four stolen rings which she falsely represented as having lawful ownership of. Lt. Anderson states that on January 21st Ms. Cone did possess four rings which she knew to be stolen and that she had intent to sell the rings. Stephanie Lynn Cone was placed in the Laurens County Detention Center with cash or surety bonds set at $1,500. She remained in custody earlier today.

Someone Already Filed His Income Tax Return

A Gray Court area man yesterday filed a report of Impersonation with the Sheriff’s Office. He said that when he was preparing his taxes he discovered someone had already used his identification. He indicated he had already notified Social Security, the IRS and the State Department of Revenue about this and he was advised to also report this to local law enforcement. He indicated he does not know who used his personal information, how they obtained it or where it was used to falsely file for his tax return. The case was being assigned to an investigator.

Wheels & Tires Taken from Carport

A theft of automotive parts dispatched Sheriff’s Sgt. Jimmy Johnson to Piedmont Avenue, Clinton at 8:17 yesterday morning. A resident said that he had taken his tires and wheels off his car while it was being painted. He said the wheels were discovered missing yesterday morning from his carport, where he had them stored during the painting. Value of the stolen wheels was $1,900.

Conflicting Stories About $10 value Rug

Clinton Public Safety was dispatched to Westchase Apartments at 3:19 yesterday afternoon on a theft report. One woman said another woman was helping her move and during the process took a rug valued at $10. She said the woman has sent threatening messages since being asked about the rug. The other woman reportedly told an officer she was given the rug, and after offering to return it the first woman has sent her threatening messages. Other investigation was underway to determine  which woman is telling the truth.

Sexual Conduct with a Minor

Sexual conduct with a minor earlier this month was alleged with the arrest of a man yesterday. The Laurens County Sheriff’s Office charged 60-year-old James David New of 210 Wuthering Heights Road, Cross Hill with Criminal Sexual Conduct with a Minor.

Lt. Bryant Cheeks states that on April 3rd one James David New did engage in sexual battery by his actions with a 10-year-old female at a Lake Greenwood location in the Cross Hill area. James David New was being held overnight in the Laurens County Detention Center, pending a bond hearing.

1st Degree Burglary & 2nd Degree Assault

A Laurens man was being held with bonds totaling $125,000 following his arrest yesterday on charges of breaking into his girlfriend’s residence and assaulting her. Laurens City Police charged 34-year-old Carlris “Carl” Randall of Apt 64 at 753 West Main, Laurens with 1st Degree Burglary and with Domestic Violence 2nd Degree. In the warrants, Sgt. James Nolan cites the investigation of Sgt. Douglas Jones as indicating that on April 8th the defendant committed 1st Degree Burglary by forcing entry into an occupied residence with intent to commit a crime therein. This allegedly on Gordon Street in Laurens, where Randall also allegedly committed 2nd Degree Domestic Violence by placing his hands on the victim’s neck and pushing her down; this occurring in front of her small child. During “Carl” Randall’s arraignment yesterday, cash or surety bonds were set at $75,000 on the 1st Degree Burglary charge and $50,000 on the 2nd Degree Domestic Assault warrant.

Downtown Laurens Crackdown on Parking Violators

Laurens Police Chief Sonny Ledda announced a crackdown on parking violations on the Public Square. This came during his monthly report to City Council last evening. Chief Ledda said “The two hour limit for parking will be enforced by surveillance cameras installed in patrol cars and fines will be increased with each violation, which begins at $5.00 and can go all the way to towing repeat offenders vehicles.”

Ledda also announced the hiring of a new school resource officer for the E.B. Morse Elementary School.

Archery Park Grand Opening April 27th

The sport of Archery is gaining increased attention locally, including great performance in high school competitions. At the April meeting of Laurens City Council last evening, City Special Projects Director Tommy Burns announced a Grand Opening for the new Ceramtec Archery Park. He said a ribbon cutting ceremony will be held April 27th at 10am at the park. It’s on Access Drive off Highway 14 near the Cerantec plant.  Burns said a new sign for the park is to be installed soon.

Vandalism to Tennis Court

Tommy Burns also announced last night that the city tennis court renovations should be completed this weekend. He indicated there’s some extra repair needed, beyond the planned renovations, because one of the courts suffered $950.00 in damages last Sunday because of a trespasser using some sort of wheeled vehicle or skateboard on its surface.