A federal grand jury has indicted James Metts, sheriff of Lexington County for the past 43 years, on charges of accepting bribes and abuse of office. Specifically, it’s alleged he took payments from the owner of the San Jose Mexican restaurants to release illegal immigrants from jail. Gov. Nikki Haley suspended Metts on Monday and appointed his former second in command, Lewis McCarty, as interim sheriff. Metts is fighting the charges. The State has the most comprehensive coverage of this story, including a companion piece on San Jose boss Greg Leon.
And, oh yeah, the former police chief of South Congaree, also located in Lexington County, has been indicted by state officials for accepting bribes to turn over illegal video gambling machines his department had seized, WIS reports. The Lexington County video gambling saga has been simmering for years, as Corey Hutchins reported in 2012, and had observers waiting for the other shoe to drop.
The South Carolina Senate has delayed a vote to select its next leader as Republican members try to prod one of their own to be the sacrificial lamb. Because Glenn McConnell is about to abandon the lieutenant governor’s office to become president of the College of Charleston, the Senate’s next president pro tempore soon will ascend directly to that office, according the state’s rules of succession, but only for the remainder of the year, as voters will select another lieutenant governor in November. So the next Senate leader basically is agreeing to surrender his legislative seniority for a short term in an office that everybody agrees is largely useless. Sen. Yancey McGill (D-Kingstree) is the only member to have publicly volunteered so far.
The DMV in Anderson County forced away a teenager, who is gender non-conforming, to remove his make-up to be photographed for a driver’s license. Chase Culpepper, 16, wears make-up and women’s clothing on a regular basis, and sought to be photographed for his driver’s license in such attire. A DMV official reportedly justified the action, saying Culpepper “did not look the way a boy should.” Culpepper says he was told he couldn’t wear a disguise for the photo. The Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund is asking the Anderson DMV to issue another photo ID with Culpepper appearing as he regularly does. The Washington Post and others are all over this story.
Always good to see a Sandlapper kicking ass on Jeopardy. Way to go, Andrea Prospero West of Columbia!
Great Gifts for the Whole Family
Don’t miss Half Moon Outfitters’ holiday sale! Up to 30% off Prana, Patagonia, The North Face, and other great brands. Location and hours here.
Hickory Tavern Is Now Open!
Find us on Facebook, Twitter (@TheHickoryTav), Instagram (@HickoryTavern), and visit our website for more info. 907 Senate Street in the Vista!
A Family-Friendly New Year’s Eve Carnival
From 6-11 PM on December 31st on Main Street, enjoy rides, games, karaoke, food, drinks and more! More information here.
New Year’s Eve at Social
Don’t miss this Black and White Affair featuring Kap Slap. Tickets available online!
Ice Skate on Main Street
Columbia’s famously hot skating rink is now open! Additional information and discounts can be found here.
Relaxation, Pain Management, and Stress Relief
Licensed massage therapist Allison Morris of AMR Massage offers 50% off your first session and every 5th session free of charge. Click here for location, hours, and more information.
SEARCH FREE TIMES
Holiday Wish ListWhere to shop for gift ideas in Columbia this season:
F/T and P/T avail. Must have a clean driving record, organized and have a prof appearance. Please call for an interview or email resume to Kerry@crystalpool.com. Must bring a copy of your Driving record and a list of all past employers with duration of employment listed as well as telephone numbers for references. Call 803-865-1200
U.S. Security Associates
Now hiring immediately for armed and unarmed security officers. WE TRAIN YOU! Columbia & surrounding areas. ussecurityassociates.com
Real Estate Spotlight
SC HousingFinancing Housing. Building SC. To find out if you qualify or for more information visit schousing.com
The Lake Carolina new home community has it all! 1 YMCA, 3 pools, 10 parks, 20+ community events each year, and much more! Learn more. www.lakecarolina.com
CoMar Products Inc. Manufacturing quality surfaces for kitchens & baths since 1965. www.comarproducts.com
Coldwell Banker United, Realtors Welcome To Our Neighborhood! Work With The Best! CBCarolinas.com
Capital Kitchen & Bath One stop solution for all your remodeling & new construction needs. CAPITALKB.COM