News Minute: Here is the latest South Carolina news from The Ass - WECT, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

News Minute: Here is the latest South Carolina news from The Associated Press at 4:40 p.m. EDT

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - South Carolina's Republican governor is featuring his biggest backer in the first television ad of his re-election campaign. Gov. Henry McMaster's campaign tells The Associated Press the governor is going up statewide Thursday with a TV ad on broadcast, cable and digital platforms.

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - South Carolina prison officials have for years blamed cellphones for contributing to inmate violence. But some who've spent time in and around correctional institutions say the phones are so plentiful, they are rarely the cause of disputes. They also say the problem stems from the inaction and collusion of currently employed correctional officers, not a shortage of employees. Gov. Henry McMaster says an officer shortage allows contraband to flow freely into the state's prisons.

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - Law enforcers around South Carolina's largest city are creating a task force to find the area's most prolific violent criminals and crack down on gun violence. Columbia Police Chief Skip Holbrook says his officers are joining Richland County sheriff's deputies to make sure these people don't have guns and arrest them if they are breaking the law. Sheriff Leon Lott says investigators will be monitoring these people so closely, they will know if they "spit on the sidewalk."

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - A man who admits bilking a South Carolina project turning warheads into nuclear reactor fuel says he's too old and too sick to go to prison. The Augusta Chronicle reports that Philip Thompson, who admits the scheme took more than $5 million over five years, asked a federal judge Monday to let him serve his sentence at home. Childs postponed her decision, saying she wants to study information on Thompson's health. Sentencing for Thompson's co-defendant, Aaron Vennefron, is also being delayed.

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