Clark Win Over Tollison For District County 3 Seat

Democrat Shirley Clark defeated the Republic Scott Tollison with a vote of  309 to 107 to win the special election for the Laurens County Council-District 3 on Tuesday.

Shirley Clark Won all but on precinct on Tuesday. Only 417 out of 4,515 voters casted their ballots in the special election.

This Election was needed to fill the seat of former councilor Garrett McDaniel who resigned earlier this year to accept a position in the Biden administration.

Piedmont Tech Offers Tuition-Free Certificate Through Historic Partnership with SC Criminal Justice Academy

To address training needs and workforce shortages in law enforcement in the state, a progressive partnership announced earlier this year includes Piedmont Technical College (PTC) and 15 other of the state’s technical colleges to assist the Academy by offering a new pre-Academy certificate. PTC will start offering the new training in January 2022.

The partnership establishes a new career pathway in law enforcement, the Police Pre-Academy Training Certificate, a 14-week program offered through PTC and the state’s other technical colleges. Candidates who apply for the program learn basic introductory law enforcement tactics and procedures to better qualify them for police employment and increased training success at the Academy.

“I think it’s going to be great,” said John Sloan, Criminal Justice Program director at PTC. “There’s no doubt that it should bolster and improve the academic qualifications of law enforcement candidates.”

Support from the state’s Lottery Tuition Assistance and SC WINS Scholarship programs covers full tuition for students in the new pathway program. Candidates are expected to secure employment with a SC law enforcement agency within one year of completing the program. Once employed, they are assessed for entry into the Academy. The measure is particularly timely as communities across the country re-evaluate their police training standards.

To offer perspective, Sloan noted that, while South Carolina requires a minimum of only 8 weeks of police training, many other states require significantly more. For example, New Jersey requires its police officers to complete 6 months (24 weeks) of training before they are hired.

“If the community colleges can help, why not do it?” he said. “The partnership couples the 14-week Police Pre-Academy Training Certificate with the 8 weeks of intense Policy Academy training for a total of 22 weeks of education and training. This is certainly a mutual benefit for all entities.”

After more than 30 years in law enforcement, Sloan has seen a need for modifications to law enforcement training due to the changing expectations of society. “Improved hiring standards and the new pathway certificate comprise a step in the right direction,” he said.

For information about PTC’s Criminal Justice Program, visit www.ptc.edu/justice.

 

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PHOTO: John Sloan, director of the PTC Criminal Justice Program

Historical Marker At The Corner of Hampton Avenue and Caroline Street

At Tuesday’s Laurens City Council Meeting, Mrs. Elma Morrison,

who is Chair of the city’s Historical Markers Committee, read the proposed text that would be inscribed on the marker at the corner of Hampton Avenue and Caroline Street, designating the Possum Hollow area of town.

 

The text would read; “By 1895 this intersection was the site of the Laurens Colored School, eventually known as Hampton Street school. That year Thomas Sanders became principal and taught 60 to 100 students with his wife Rachel Sanders.

It was housed in a wooden building behind Saint Paul Baptist Church and supported by local African American residents.

It was rebuilt after a 1912 fire that also burned the church and the Sanders family home.

 

Hampton Street school was located in what was once known as the Possum Hollow neighborhood, it served grades 1 to 10 until 1937 when Thomas Sanders High School opened 1.3 miles southeast of the Hampton Street school.

 

The Hampton Street School then became an elementary school for grades one through seven, the school closed in 1954, and was replaced by a new Thomas Sanders Elementary School built near the high school with funds from the South Carolina Equalization Program.

LCC Approval OF Building Multi-Unit Townhome

Laurens City Council unanimously voted for conditional approval of building a multi-unit townhome project on property located between Pine haven Street Extension, and Todd Ave within the city limits.

The request was presented to council by Jeremy Hudson of Building and Zoning after the project was originally unanimously approved by the city planning commission.

The request stated that Oxford Real Estate Group will develop 64 units on the property with approximately 18 month’s timeline for completion.

The units will average between 1,300-1,500 square feet each and the property is currently zoned R3.

Ms. Debbie Buckley, A representative from Oxford was on hand to answer any questions about the project, such as soundproofing between units, parking, sidewalks, landscaping, amount of bedrooms and if the plans were designed to obey the ordinances in place for Laurens.

Buckley said that the plans would be adjusted to comply, but council unanimously agreed that they would vote for final approval of the project until a follow up plan was submitted that complied with all existing city ordinances.

LCPW and Love Bailey & Associates, LLC

At last night’s Laurens Commission of Public Works meeting, the commission unanimously approved a resolution to accept a bid from Love Bailey & Associates, LLC of Laurens, South Carolina, for the amount of eighteen thousand five hundred dollars ($18,500) per year for the next three years for financial audit services.

“We have been using Greene, Finney, and Horton for years, but we switch up every now and then just to have a fresh set of eyes,” explained CPW General Manager John Young.

Young also went on to say that, “We feel very comfortable going with Love, Baily, and Associates, they have given us a good price, and their company is growing by leaps and bounds.”

PTC Newberry Campus Among Venues in Rotating Art Showcase

Piedmont Technical College’s Newberry Campus is not only a stop on students’ career paths. Now it is also a stop on the Newberry Made Art Showcase Tour, in which local businesses and

municipal venues host regular exhibitions on a monthly rotation. And one of the featured artists       in the showcase just happens to be a humble PTC maintenance technician on campus named Brian Hare.

“Brian is actually the first featured artist here, but we will be displaying art from local artists in a cycle,” explained PTC Newberry Campus Director Beth Jaeger “The art is not for sale. It’s just to showcase and bring awareness to local folks and possibly spark an interest in the arts. I think it’

a wonderful initiative and am super proud to be a part of it.”

Hare’s medium is photography. Newberry artist Robert Matheson persuaded him to display his work. Matheson and his wife, Amy, have spearheaded the Showcase tour.

“I am not strong on wanting to show my stuff yet. I had to be talked into it,” Hare said. “Robert is the one who encouraged me to get back into photography. I have been experimenting with infrared photography. … One side of my display is pictures done in infrared. The other side is basically local stuff shot traditionally. Most everything I have shot so far has been in Newberry.”

Infrared photography captures images on the light spectrum beyond the ability of the naked eye to see. Photographers can create infrared images using special infrared film or infrared filters used on film or digital cameras. The results add a new dimension to typical photos and are often described as ethereal or otherworldly.

Hare’s work will be on display on the PTC Newberry Campus through the end of September, after which it will be rotated to another location, and, in turn, another artist’s work will be displayed on campus for a month.

Jaeger wanted to share a side story about Hare’s display.

“The ends of the shelves were Brian’s grandfather’s tomato stakes that he used in his garden and the actual shelves came from his grandfather’s barn,” she said. “Brian repurposed them to showcase his beautiful work. I love that he included something that was such a part of his family.”

For more information about Hare’s work, visit www.photosbybhare.com. For more information about the Newberry Made Showcase, visit www.newberrymade.com.

 

LCSD 55 Board Of Trustees Work Session

The LCSD 55 Board of Trustees will have a work session on Tuesday, September 28, 2021.  The session will begin at 4:00 p.m. and will take place in the main training room of the LCSD 55 Administrative Office.  Due to the COVID-19 virus pandemic, limited seating is available for in-person attendance at the meeting.  Doors will open for seating at 3:30 p.m. and seats will be filled on a first come first serve basis. The meeting will be broadcast via Live Feed on You Tube with the link being posted on the LCSD 55 website <https://www.laurens55.org/> and on the LCSD 55 Facebook page.

Patterson Promoted To Executive Director Of Strategic At PC

A Laurens County native and long-serving leader at Presbyterian College has been promoted to serve as the school’s executive director of strategic initiatives.

Leni Neal Patterson, a 1983 graduate of PC, will help facilitate strategic planning processes and serve as project manager for specific initiatives critical to meeting the College’s strategic plans. In addition to assisting and advising PC president Dr. Matthew vandenBerg, she also will work with colleagues across the campus and external constituents to ensure institutional alignment with strategic plans.

In his announcement to campus on Sept 13, vandenBerg said Patterson’s “supreme project management capabilities, her deep experience in multiple offices, and her strong relationships make her an ideal choice for this role.”

Patterson joined the staff at her alma mater in 2000 and has served in a variety of leadership roles, including dean of enrollment and dean of community life. Since 2014, she has served as executive director of alumni relations and most recently has served as interim vice president of enrollment and interim director of marketing and communications.

In her work in alumni relations, Patterson established eight alumni chapters and re-established the African-American Alumni Council and the Young Alumni Council. She engaged more than 300 alumni in PC’s Compass Program to conduct informational interviews with college sophomores related to their career interests.

She has also been a dedicated community leader. Patterson is the former chair of the Laurens County School District 55 Board of Trustees, former president of the S.C. School Boards Association, and a director on the National School Boards Association. She is a member and elder at First Presbyterian Church in Clinton, where she currently serves as a member of the Session and as chair of the administrative committee.

She has three sons and daughters-in-law and four grandchildren.

CPD Arrest Clinton Man For Domestic Violence

The Clinton Police Department arrested a Clinton Man Monday for alleged Domestic Violence 3rd Degree. 52-year-old James Earl Kingsborough of Clinton Manor Drive was accused of striking the victim in the facial area with his closed fist. This caused redness and slight swelling near her right eye. This offense allegedly occurred within the city limits of Clinton. James Kingsborough was released from the Johnson Detention Center on a personal recognize bond.

Ft Inn Man Charged with Domestic Violence 3rd Degree

A Fountain Inn Man is behind bars for alleged Domestic Violence 3rd Degree. The Laurens County Sheriff’s Office arrested 34-year-old Bradley D Atwell of Georgia Street Monday for the alleged offense. According to the arrest warrant on September 14th Atwell is accused of assaulting the victim by grabbing her, throwing her around the house, throwing items at the victim causing injury, and had the apparent present ability to cause physical harm or injury under circumstance that created fear of imminent peril to the victim. Bradley Atwell remained in the Johnson Detention Center this morning with a cash surety bond set at $5,000 dollars.

Tomeka Craig Sworn In At Laurens Commission of Public Works Meeting

At last night’s Laurens Commission of Public Works Meeting, Ms. Tomeka Craig was sworn in as commissioner to fill the vacancy on the board, for district 2, due to the untimely death of Brenda Holland Curry.

Ms. Craig, who is a lifetime resident of Laurens, was sworn in by Leslie Mattison, Laurens City Clerk.

Ms. Craig, who is also the property manager for Hilltop Apartments, through Cahec Management, told WLBG that she had always been interested in serving her community.

Laurens City Council also approved Ms. Craig appointment at their last meeting, and once her current term is over, she will need to run in an election to keep the position.

 Also at the meeting, Commissioner Jeff Thompson was unanimously elected as Vice Chairman, after being nominated by Commissioner Ulysses Cunningham, with a second by Commissioner Gerald Abercrombie.

Fatal Collision In Newberry County

Man killed in single-car wreck

The South Carolina Highway Patrol responded to a single vehicle Fatal Collision In Newberry County On Monday Morning.

According to Master Trooper Gary Miller the collision Occurred 8:10 am on Philips Church Road near Tiester Road 6 miles west of Newberry.The driver was driving a 2015 Dodge  4 door Sedan headed east towards Philips Church road when the car traveled off the right side of the road, struck a ditch and crossed over Tiester Road landing in a pond.

The Driver was not wearing a seat belt and was entrapped. The Driver was taken to Newberry County Memorial Hospital and died, according to Trooper Miller. No other passengers in the car and no other  injuries were reported . The Newberry Corner  Office is expected to publicly identify the victims name today.

CAR SEAT SAFETY DURING NATIONAL CHILD PASSENGER SAFETY WEEK

Child Car Seat Safety | City of San Jose

The South Carolina Department of Public Safety will be participating in the annual Child Passenger Safety Week September 19-25. The national campaign aims to educate parents and caregivers on how to properly ensure their children are buckled up correctly whenever they are riding in a vehicle. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 46 percent of all child safety seats are installed incorrectly. Motor vehicle collisions are a leading cause of death for children ages 1 to 13. In 2018, NHTSA reported that 35 percent of all children killed in motor vehicle collisions were unrestrained. CPS week will include both in-person and virtual activities on the SCDPS social media pages and website. In-person activities will include safety talks and car seat demonstrations at the South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles on Monday, September 20, and Friday, September 24, from 9 a.m. through 11 a.m.

Every day, our troopers see children who are not properly restrained in vehicles. Ultimately, its the responsibility of every parent and caregiver to ensure they are educated on proper restraint recommendations based on the child’s height, age and weight, said South Carolina Highway Patrol Col. Christopher Williamson. We highly recommend getting your children’s car seats checked with a certified Child Passenger Safety technician so you can have peace of mind as you travel with your precious cargo.

According to the SC Child Passenger Safety Law:

Infants under two years old must be secured in a rear-facing car seat until the child exceeds the height or weight limit allowed by the manufacturer of the car seat before moving to a forward-facing car seat.

A child at least age 2 or under 2 who has outgrown the manufacturers height or weight limits for a rear-facing car seat must be secured in a forward-facing car seat in a rear seat of the vehicle until the child exceeds the highest height or weight requirements of the forward-facing car seat.

Children who are at least four years old, who have outgrown a forward-facing seat, may be moved to a booster seat until they meet the height and fit requirements for an adult safety belt.

A child at least age 8 or at least 57 inches tall may be restrained by an adult safety belt if the child can be secured properly by an adult safety seat belt. Remember, the safest place for all children is in the back seat of the vehicle. Car seats and booster seats should be registered with the seat manufacturer for important safety updates or recalls that may occur.

Parents and caregivers can view more information on car seat safety and locate a certified technician at www.nhtsa.gov/carseat

Ft Inn Man Charged With Harassment

A Fountain Inn Man was booked in the Laurens County Johnson Detention Center Wednesday for alleged Harassment 1st degree. The Laurens county Sheriff’s Office arrested 18-year-old Joseph Andrew Dorsey of Golf Lane for the alleged offense. According to reports during a period of two weeks in August Dorsey allegedly  made repeated verbal and electronic Threats to a juvenile victim threatening to kill the victim, her boyfriend, and her family. He also allegedly sent videos to the victim brandishing a firearm while making threats causing the victim and her family to fear for their safety. The Victim had advised Dorsey to cease contact with her. With a Cash Surety Bond of $5,000 dollars Joseph Dorsey has since been released from the Johnson Detention Center.

Waterloo Man Behind Bars For Two Bench Warrants

A Waterloo man is behind bars for two Bench Warrants. The Laurens County Sheriff’s Office arrested 36-year-old James Michael Landreth of River Fork Road on the Thursday for the two bench warrants. The alleged charges are Petit Larceny and Possession of less than one gram of Meth. James Landreth remains in the Laurens County Johnson Detention Center this morning.

Fatal Collision On Highway 72

A Fatal Collision occurred Thursday Morning on Highway 72, according to State Highway Patrol.

Aimi Pretty Perrett, 27, of Greenwood was pronounce dead at the scene of the wreck at 7:54 a.m. Thursday, according to the Laurens County Chief Deputy Coroner.

The  fatal collision happened, three miles west of Cross Hill on Highway 72, said Highway Patrol officer Hovis. The driver of a 2003 Toyota sedan was traveling west on the highway when the car ran off the right side of the road. The driver overcorrected, crossed the centerline and was struck by an oncoming 2007 Mercury SUV, according the Highway Patrol.

The driver of the Toyota died at the scene of the wreck and was trapped in their vehicle and had to be mechanically extracted.

The Mercury’s driver, a 26-year-old woman from Spartanburg, was injured and taken to Self Regional for Treatment.  An autopsy will be performed this morning, according to Laurens county Chief Deputy Coroner.

Adopt A Dog Event

The Laurens County Sheriff’s Animal control will be having an adoption event this weekend. The Event will take place Saturday September 18th, from 9 Am till 1 PM at the Laurens Tractor Supply on 917 East Main Street, in Laurens, SC. Adoption is $20 and Microchipping is $20. Dog Baths will be done by the Laurens FFA if weather permits.

S.C. Reaches 50% Vaccination Rate

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) announced Thursday that the Palmetto State has officially reached a 50 percent vaccination rate among eligible residents.

In July, the agency announced that 50 percent of residents had received at least one dose of vaccine. Today’s milestone of 50 percent being completely vaccinated is more significant, as it puts South Carolina that much closer to the 70-80 percent vaccination goal.

“Reaching this 50 percent benchmark is a testament to the countless hours DHEC and partner staff have put into putting these life-saving doses into arms,” said Dr. Edward Simmer, DHEC Director. “It’s also indicative of our outreach efforts, work with local and state leaders, and so many others who understand how important vaccination is to ending this pandemic. That said, the mission is not over because the pandemic is not over. We need more South Carolinians to step up and get vaccinated so we can stamp COVID out once and for all.”

More opportunities to get vaccinated are on the agenda here in Laurens County this evening and tomorrow.

A FREE COVID Vaccination Clinic is being held this evening in Clinton’s Wilder Stadium. This is part of DHEC’s “In It to Win It” campaign in South Carolina’s fight against COVID. The Pfizer vaccine will be available this evening for anyone 12 or older. This is taking place from 5:00 this afternoon until 9:00 this evening at Wilder Stadium, behind Clinton Middle School at 800 North Adair Street in Clinton.

Recipients of the vaccine at Wilder Stadium this evening will  receive a gift card and will be entered to win a TV.

You may call the COVID-19 Vaccine Info Line 7 days a week from 7:00 am until 7:00 pm.

There is a FREE COVID-19 Testing and Vaccination event Saturday (9/18) at Beaverdam Baptist Church, 1252 Beaverdam Baptist Church Road, Enoree. COVID vaccinations will be available for anyone 12 or older. Youth must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. This testing is for anyone from anywhere. You do not have to display symptoms.

As for the state reading the 50% mark,  South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster noted, “We’ve reached an important milestone with over 50% of eligible South Carolinians making the decision to get vaccinated, but the reemergence of the virus shows that we have more work to do. ” He added, “Ultimately, the decision to get vaccinated or not is a personal one, but I would ask every South Carolinian to consult your doctor and speak with trusted family and friends in order to make the most educated decision possible. Two things are clear – the most effective way to protect ourselves from COVID-19 is to get vaccinated and the vaccine is readily available in every part of the state. If you decide to get vaccinated after thoughtful consideration of all the facts, now is the time to do it.”

DHEC will continue its efforts to get residents vaccinated through various outreach efforts and events. These include vaccination opportunities at the University of South Carolina and Clemson University home football games, as well as mobile vaccination clinics which began earlier this month. These efforts are in addition to the hundreds of clinics around the state, and the ability to visit pharmacies and doctors’ offices to get vaccinated .Vaccinations are available for ages 12 and up. Visit DHEC’s COVID-19 webpage for more information, the locator page to find a nearby place to get vaccinated, or call our Vaccine Information Line at 1-866-365-8110

LCC Meeting Approves the 2021 JAG Award Grant

At Tuesday Night’s County Council Meeting, council approved a request from the sheriff’s office to approve their 2021 JAG Award Grant, and their spending plan for the funds, which total $20, 545.

Their proposed spending includes $4, 500.00 for a child identification and fingerprinting system, $8,045.00 for a latent print dusting station, to protect the officer during latent print processing using latent fingerprint powders, and $8,000.00 to purchase laptop computers and software for employees to enter data researching data and accessing other vital information stored within the office’s records management system.

 

Laurens Man Behind Bars on Multiple Charges Including Burglary

A Laurens Man is behind bars for an alleged Burglary, Trespassing, Malicious Injury to Property, and Breach of Peace. Wednesday The Laurens County Sheriff’s Office arrested 41-year-old Harry Andrew Weisner, II of Lakeview Drive for the alleged crimes. According to reports on September 14th  Weisner allegedly did attempt to gain entry into a shop building, by throwing bricks through a glass window. This caused malicious damage to personal property valued $2,000 or less. He trespassed onto the property of the victim after being asked to leave and having been warned in the past. Harry Andrew Wesiner, II remained in the Laurens County Johnson Detention Center this morning.