Laurens @ Clinton Game Podcast
Originally Broadcast 8-26-16 on WLBG
Laurens @ Clinton Game Podcast
Originally Broadcast 8-26-16 on WLBG
A case of whooping cough (pertussis) has been confirmed at a school in Laurens County School District 56.
District 56 Superintendent Dr. David O’Shields tells WLBG that the school nurse at Clinton Elementary received a call on Monday from officials with the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) alerting the school that one student who had attended Clinton Elementary last week had tested positive for whooping cough over the weekend. District 56 sent information about the disease home with students on Monday and used their telephone alert system to notify parents to check the handout.
According to the web site of the Mayo Clinic, pertussis, or whooping cough, is a highly contagious respiratory disease which is contracted by airborne contact. The disease usually begins with symptoms similar to the common cold (runny nose, nasal congestion, watery eyes, fever, cough). The disease can progress to include thick mucus collecting in the lungs, difficulty in breathing and very severe coughing.
The most effective means to avoid whooping cough is the DTaP vaccine. If the disease is contracted after vaccination symptoms are usually much less severe.
There is currently no known ongoing exposure to whooping cough at Clinton Elementary. If exposure did occur it happened last week. Symptoms of the disease usually appear in 7 to 10 days.
Last night was a special evening for Laurens County Adult Education and the Johnson Detention Center, as inmate De’Andre Jamal Reed received his GED Diploma. He’s the first inmate-graduate of Laurens County’s newly formed GED mobile test center, a first such location in the state.
Dr. Joe Makla , director of the Laurens County Adult Education, spoke on how this program began. About 18 months ago Makla, along with the detention center staff, begain the Work Keys Program in the detention center. This is a certificate program for employers to refer to in finding suitable employees.
Dr. Makla said “We heard from those in the program that they wanted to take their GED test, but there are only two fixed GED test centers located in jails in South Carolina, only in larger correctional facilities such as Charleston and Spartanburg. (locally)The only fixed testing site around was at Piedmont Tech, which was impossible for those incarcerated to attend. Then I heard about the possibility of having a mobile test center here at Johnson.” Makla immediately went to work to institute such a program in Laurens County.
Dr. Makla continued “This could not have been possible without Major Tyson, Scott Weeks and the staff at the detention center, who made room for us to bring in and take back out all the materials necessary. And, of course, his teacher Janet Thompson.”
Johnson Detention Center Administrator, Major Joe Tyson, gave the opening remarks at last night’s ceremony, saying “Tonight is a picture- perfect example of why I chose this profession. We now have 15 inmates enrolled in the GED Program, and 125 in the Work Unit Program.”
Addressing inmate Reed, Sheriff Ricky Chastain said “You, DJ, are a shining example. We are depending on you. You are now a leader and it is up to you to let others know what can be accomplished. We are watching you as our diamond.”
On hand for the 1st GED Graduation at the Johnson Detention Center last night was retired Laurens County Administrator Ernie Segars, who was given special recognition for his help in instituting the Work Keys program in Laurens County. Also on hand were former County Council Chair, now County Auditor Jim Coleman, Representative Mike Pitts and Laurens City Police Chief Sonny Ledda.
The Sheriff’s Office yesterday arrested a man wanted for a shooting at a Columbia man at a night-club north of Laurens over a year ago. 28-year-old Sergio DeMorris McDowell of 1643 Apple Orchard Road, Clinton is charged with Attempted Murder and Possession of a Weapon during a Violent Crime.
Lt. Cheek states that n July 5th, 2015 McDowell discharged a firearm many times at the victim in an attempt to murder. He states this occurred at the Club Paradise at 20669 Highway 221 North of Laurens. Lt. Cheek states that Sergio McDowell knowingly possessed and displayed a firearm during the incident.
Bond was denied on both the Attempted Murder and the Weapons charge.
McDowell was also served with a Bench Warrant for a Driving under Suspension conviction in August, 2012 with a sentence of 30 days or $652. Sergio DeMorris McDowell remains in the Johnson Detention Center.
Anthony J. Sims Ministries and WLBG will hold the annual School Supplies Giveaway Saturday morning beginning at 10:00 am at the WLBG studios on Hillcrest Drive in Laurens.
Rev. Sims was quoted “We are expecting a lot of people just like the previous years. We’ll have free hot dogs and drinks for everyone that comes by and school supplies for any children in need as long as they last. School supplies usually go quickly so to guarantee your children get what they need, be here when we start at 10:00 am. We always have folks coming by later in the day after it’s over so remember to come early.”
“This has been a very successful event every year thanks to the untiring efforts of Rev. Sims and the great people, churches, and community leaders in Laurens County that donate funds and supplies to make this all possible. This is one of those events that confirms that no matter what is going on in this country, in Laurens County we are one people united to help each other!” said WLBG Manager Wyatt Mattison.
It all begins at 10:00 am Saturday morning at the WLBG Studios.
The Laurens County Museum has passed the half-way point in its $1 million capital campaign. Board Chair Robby Bell said a recent anonymous donation for $100,000 has moved the Museum closer to its eventual goal. He said the donation was from a local source. Bell said the large donation was stipulated for use in areas that can produce on-going revenue to help with the operation of the museum. 85% of the money is to be used for the upstairs area, which is to be developed into a venue that will be available to be rented for special events. The rest of the major gift will be used for developing the gift shop, located in the front of the museum at street level.
Bell said an additional $25,000 has been given to the museum from three other sources in the past six weeks. Part of that is being used to develop to purchase electronics for a Mini-Theater area. A large part of these extra funds will also be used for construction of the gift shop.
Robby Bell noted that while a lot of work remains to open the museum with exhibits, they’re hopeful of opening the Gift Shop in January.
Special events continue being held on the main floor of the new facility to raise money for the development of the new museum. The latest is music celebrating the 50’s and 60’s on Saturday, August 20th. It starts with a cruise-in featuring classic cars on the square from 4 to 7, and continues with the music, dancing and refreshments in the Museum at 7:00. Advance tickets are being sold at the Artist Coop, Main Street Laurens, Holmes Photography and from Museum board members.
The development campaign for the new museum began about 3 ½ years ago.
A report of a shooting dispatched the Sheriff’s Office to 1492 Barnett Road, Cross Hill at 9:17 thursday night. Deputy Tim Byrd was first on scene, and spoke with a man who said his girlfriend had been assaulting him so he fired his pistol at her, apparently striking her in or around her stomach.
Details on the man’s story reportedly changed somewhat. The girlfriend had reportedly left the house, driving a pickup. Officers later learned that the victim had met her grandmother, who then took her to Self Regional, where she was undergoing surgery overnight. Investigators J.D. Shelton and Bryant Cheek called to the scene and were to hopefully talk with the female victim.
Meanwhile, 48-year-old Joseph Anthony Jordan III of 1492 Barnett Road, Cross Hill was arrested and placed in the Johnson Detention Center, where he was being held, pending charges. Deputy Byrd seized two handguns from the residence.
Assault on a woman with head injury was alleged Thursday with the arrest of 20-year-old Natasha Skye Thomas. She was booked with a Taylors address, but a warrant states she lives in an apartment at 101 Woodrow Street, Laurens.
Laurens City Police charged Ms. Thomas with Assault and Battery 2nd Degree. A warrant cites investigation of Officer Sherfield as indicating that on August 11th Ms. Thomas struck the victim about the face and head, and that Thomas had prior knowledge of the victim’s medical condition regarding lesions on her brain. The warrant states that this assault could have resulted in moderate bodily injury to the victim. The incident allegedly occurred on Woodrow Street Thursday. Natasha Skye Thomas was being held with a $5,000 cash or surety bond.
A local man was charged with Crack Cocaine Distribution Thursday following his arrest on Green Street Wednesday. Laurens City Police charged Aljabbar Sha’keem Gilliam of Laurens with Possession of Crack Cocaine with Intent to Distribute and Possession with Intent within Proximity of a School.
Warrants citing an investigation of Officer Andrew Ashley state that on August 10th a vehicle being driven by Aljabbar Gilliam in which he was the sole occupant, was found to have 54.2 grams of crack cocaine under the driver’s seat.
Further, it states that scales and razor blades were found inside the vehicle alongside the crack cocaine. The cocaine was reportedly packed for sale and this was on Green Street, within 1/8th mile of a school. Aljabbar Sha’keem Gilliam was released yesterday on surety bonds totaling $40,000
The Sheriff’s Office made an arrest Thursday for alleged counterfeit money cashed early this month. 35 year old Wendy Kay Polson of 198 Mill Pond Road, Clinton was charged with Forgery.
Lt. Blackmon states that on August 3rd one Wendy Polson did make counterfeit money with intent to deprive the victim. An $8,000 cash or surety bond was set during arraignment. Wendy Kay Polson remained in the Johnson Detention Center earlier Friday morning.
39 year old Scarlett Mohammed M. Abuzahri of Six Mile with an address listed as 5490 Fairview Road, Gray Court was booked into the Johnson Detention Center by the SC Department of Probation and Parole Thursday
The warrants cite 2 counts, Violation of Probation
Both warrants allege she failed to report, pay fines, pay restitution and to follow the advice of her agent.
She was being held overnight, pending a bond hearing Friday.
A small parcel of private land is to be used for a landscaped welcome to Laurens on West Main at Anderson Drive. The Laurens CPW this week approved installing a water tap on the parcel at a cost of $1,050, understanding the City of Laurens will cover the cost of water used at the site. It’s to be developed with landscaping and a “Welcome to Laurens” sign.
The owners made arrangements with the city to have the property landscaped and to let the city install a Welcome to Laurens sign.
The tap will cost approximately $1,050 to install, but the city will pay for the water used. There is a stipulation to the approval that the owners will continually use that property for the intended purpose of benefitting the city.
The triangle at the intersection consists of 2/10th of an acre.
Sheriff’s Corporal Jamie Lee Edwards was dispatched to a Green Pond area residence at 3:49 thursday afternoon to investigate an assault. A man without a shirt on and with red marks on his upper chest area said his girlfriend had attacked him. He said that she and their 2-year-old son took a nap. He decided to clean the house some. She reportedly awoke and complained that he didn’t do a good job cleaning the house. He indicated an argument escalated to where each was saying things about the other’s deceased mother. He indicated that in anger he hit a wax lamp, causing the bowl to break and wax to go all over the place. The girlfriend then allegedly got a broom and struck him over the head and shoulder, then started hitting him on the body. He said he pushed her off him then she slammed his phone on the counter and slammed his digital camera on the floor, then bit him on the chest. There was no report of the woman at the scene when the officer arrived.
In Laurens County SC we have a lot of good people. They’d give you the shirt off their back. They’ll happily go out of their way to help someone or even a little dog in need. But we also have a few humans who are capable of this.
I’m gonna call him Pinky. He was found this morning in a dumpster near Laurens Terrace Apartments…..tied up in a plastic bag……and tossed into a dumpster. He’s a little pit puppy and has a badly broken rear leg.
Forget displaying anger toward the unknown punk who decided to prove he was a man by doing this to a 6 week old puppy. That won’t help Pinky.
If there is someone, anyone who can help Pinky please contact Laurens County (SC) Animal Control right away. The county does not have the funds to help Pinky. He needs a good veterinarian. He’s hurting and this needs to be done lightning quick. If not, the humane thing to do is to end his hurting.
Call (864)984-6812 for more information on how you can help. A rescue group that wants to be Pinky’s miracle would be an answer to prayer.
Please SHARE. Please. Pinky needs a miracle fast.
This has been an interesting election year, with a candidate just pulled from the ballot by court action. Things could get even more interesting for the General Election, depending on what happens over the next three weeks. We reported last week on a special filing period that starts tomorrow, running from Noon August 9th to Noon on the 16th, during which persons can file for the Republican Nomination for Coroner of Laurens County.
If one person has filed for the Republican Party’s nomination for Coroner by the 16th, that person would, supposedly, become the party’s nominee. However, if two or more file, voters would go to the polls to choose on August 30th. Considering that the deadline for ballots for this fall was set at August 15th, the special filing puts Laurens County one day past that. This hopefully would not be too big a problem. But, if a primary election is required, that throws the ballots 15 days behind schedule.
A Republican Primary on August 30th would be another chore in itself, if required. This would be a country-wide election, supposedly with all precincts needing to be open, for the single position being voted on.
Elections Director Lynne West noted that August 30th is already established as the day for a special election in the City of Laurens. Four people are competing to replace the late Richard Griffin on Laurens City Council. With four candidates, Mrs. West said she’s expecting to have a run-off election two weeks following the August 30th special election. It would be held two Tuesdays later, on September 13th.
Saturday at 2:04 pm, Deputy Hall of the Sheriff’s Office was dispatched to a Highway 308 residence in Clinton in reference to a vehicle that was in the back yard of a residence that fit the description of a prior call that a man was shooting out of his car.
Upon arrival, the deputy knocked on the front door and spoke with a resident who stated her son was on the back porch with a shotgun and that there was a car with 3 people in the back yard. At this time the Clinton Department of Public Safety arrived to assist and they went to the rear of the house and made contact with the 3 individuals and had the male driver and female passenger exit the vehicle.
They cleared the vehicle and made contact with another female in the rear floorboard. EMS was called because the third passenger was barely conscious and in pain. Deputy Hall then began a search of the vehicle for the weapon that was involved in the incident prior to his arrival and located a .380 Bersa automatic in the glove compartment. The driver and passenger were placed under investigative detention. The other passenger was transported by EMS.
After taking statements from the residents of the home, The driver was placed under arrest. 27 year old Olin Christopher Rhodes, II of 1445 Highway 92 Enoree was booked into the Johnson Detention Center Saturday by the Sheriff’s Office, charged with possession of a firearm by a felon, unlawful carry of a pistol, pointing and presenting a firearm at a person, and ticketed for driving under suspensions 2nd. The warrants allege that Rhodes did commit the crime of weapons possession by a person convicted of a violent felony in that he did posses a Bersa Thunder 380 with prior felony conviction, did carry about his person a handgun not being authorized by law to do so, and did unlawfully and not in self defense point and present a firearm at the victim, theis incident taking place at the victim’s residence. Rhodes remains in the detention center on $51,270 bond
Saturday Just after 10 pm, Deputy Byrd of the Sheriff’s Office was dispatched to a Finney Drive Clinton residence in reference to an attempted break in. The complainant stated that an unknown white male was attempting to break into the residence. While en route, the complainant stated to dispatch he opened the door and saw what he believed to be a handgun in the possession of the male subject so he closed the door and stayed on the line with dispatch.
Upon arrival, the deputy located the male subject in the back yard sitting in the complainants chair. The subject was asked what he did with the firearm. He replied that another male subject came and got the weapon and walked off with it. The subject was searched but no weapon found. The complainant then came outside and stated that he and his children were inside the residence when they heard the back door being pulled on. At that time, the complainant retrieved his firearm and approached the back door and warned the subject that he was about to be shot if he didn’t get away from the door. He stated the subject complied and walked away from the door. The complainant then opened the door and saw the subject walking across the back yard with what appeared to be a gun. The complainant asked the subject what he had in his hand and he stated it was a 9mm handgun. At that time the complainant and his children retreated into the residence and awaited law enforcement.
The Deputy then spoke with the subject, who was sweating profusely and admitted that earlier he shot up meth. After searching the area, the deputy found the subject’s cell phone and determined that the complainant may have seen the cell phone and thought it was a gun. It appeared the subject may have still been under the influence of drugs. The subject attempted to speak with the victims as if he knew them but the victim stated this was the first time he had ever seen the subject and didn’t know him at all.
The subject was arrested and transported to the Johnson Detention Center. A short time later, the deputy received a call from the detention center that a small bag of what appeared to be meth was found on the subject. It tested positive and that charge was added to the subject’s charges.
60 year old Dennis Lamar Kernells of 300 Marion Place Clinton was booked Saturday charged with possession less than one gram meth, breach of peace aggravated in nature. Warrants allege that on August 6th Kernells did commit the crime of Breach of Peace Aggravated in nature by pulling on the back door trying to get into a victims house threatening the possession of a firearm and did knowingly posses less than one gram of methamphetamine and had prior convictions for this offense. He remains in the detention center on $35,000 bond.
Saturday at 12:23 pm, Deputy Edwards of the Sheriff’s Office was dispatched to a Durbin Rd. Fountain Inn residence in reference to a horse being shot. The complainant stated on the phone with Deputy Edwards that they had been at the emergency vet clinic and were on the way back to the farm with the horse and wanted the officer to meet them. Upon arrival the deputy met with the male complainant who showed pictures of the horse from earlier that morning before it was taken to the vet. The vet had cut the bullet out of the horse and it was turned over to the deputy. Te owner of the horse said he and his daughter came to the farm that morning to ride the horse and he noticed blood on the horse’s left hind quarter. He and the farm owners then took the horse to the vet. The farm owners stated that on Friday night between 5:30 and 8:30 there was shooting coming from an area directly behind the horse farm and this was normal activity from that residence and they had called the Sheriff’s Office numerous times in reference to the people shooting guns toward their house. The evidence will be forwarded to investigations to continue this case.
At 2:20 pm on Saturday, Deputy Edwards of the Sheriff’s Office arrived at the liquor store on Hwy 14 in Barksdale concerning a shoplifting that occurred Friday. The complainant stated a black male subject came into the store Friday evening and seemed suspicious about his actions. The complainant had another customer and didn’t see the actions of the subject. The subject then left without making a purchase. After reviewing the security footage, the male subject was seen stealing two bottles of liquor. Deputy Edwards reviewed the security footage and saw the subject come in, ask the complainant a question, then get on his cell phone and stuff a bottle down his pants then walk to the other side of the store and grab another bottle. The subject then turns his back to the complainant and positions the bottles in his pants so that they won’t be seen then turns and leaves. A copy of the video will be forwarded to investigations.
Friday Deputy Hunter of the Sheriff’s Office was dispatched to a Durbin Church Rd. Fountain Inn residence at 7:06 pm concerning a Larceny. Upon arrival, the complainant advised she had last been at the property on July 23rd and returned Friday to discover that a 6’ by 12’ black utility trailer and a 6’ by 12’ white enclosed trailer were missing. She stated the trailers had been cable locked to trees and were equipped with hitch locks. The deputy observed that one cable lock around a tree had been cut along with a cut hitch lock. The other cable lock was found intact around a tree but was not in the locked position. The complainant further advised that inside the enclosed trailer were three dirt bikes. A blue 2004 Yamaha YZ250, a green Kawasaki KLX110 and a Green Kawasaki KX65. The complainant was in the process of forwarding the vin information to the deputy to enter the dirt bikes into NCIC and the incident will be forwarded to investigations to continue the case.