VIRUS OUTBREAK-SOUTH CAROLINA
Unemployment soars; stay at home orders in SC biggest cities
WEST COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — In the first week of economic disruption from the coronavirus, more than 31,000 people said they lost their jobs in South Carolina. The state on Thursday released unemployment claims for the week ending March 21. If all claims were approved, the number of people without a job in South Carolina would climb 55% from the January unemployment figures when the state jobless rate was 2.4%. Also Thursday, Columbia passed a stay-at-home order, following Charleston's lead. The order closes nail salons, gyms, barber shops and other businesses deemed non-essential. Gov, Henry McMaster again said there was no need for a similar statewide order.
Cops: SC woman tied up with Christmas lights, fatally beaten
GREENVILLE, S.C. (AP) — Authorities say a man and a woman tied a woman they were living with up with Christmas lights and beat her to death in her South Carolina home. Greenville County deputies said the body of Carolyn Jackson was found in a shallow grave about 5 miles from her Honea Path home on March 24. Authorities say 36-year-old Amanda Scott and 39-year-old Denardis Kilgo are charged with murder. Arrest warrants say along with tying her up and beating Jackson, the pair also wrapped in her a way that restricted her breathing. Investigators said they haven't determined why the pair killed Jackson.
Coroner: Victims found in burning car were slain before fire
SUMTER, S.C. (AP) — A South Carolina coroner has determined that two victims discovered inside a burning car had been killed before the blaze engulfed the vehicle. The Sumter County Sheriff’s Office says authorities found the vehicle containing the bodies on the side of a road Monday. The Sumter County Coroner ruled the deaths homicides on Wednesday after finding a female victim had suffered a gunshot wound to the head and a male victim had suffered head trauma prior to the fire. Investigators said they think the blaze was intentionally set. The victims' identities haven't been determined.
GREENVILLE POLICE SETTLEMENT
S Carolina man who says officer hurt him in jail given $90K
GREENVILLE, S.C. (AP) — A South Carolina man who said he suffered major neck and spinal injuries after a police officer pushed him to a jail floor while he was still in handcuffs was given a $90,000 settlement. The Greenville News reports the city of Greenville settled a March 2018 lawsuit filed by Bobby Falls against the police department and county detention center last month. Falls was booked into the detention center in August 2016 for public intoxication. Officials say they do not believe the officer did anything wrong. A spokeswoman for the city says the decision to settle the lawsuit was made to avoid additional costs and a trial. The charges against Falls were dismissed in 2018.
EXCESSIVE FORCE LAWSUIT
Lawsuit: Constable used excessive force during traffic stop
FLORENCE, S.C. (AP) — A South Carolina man who was shot and wounded while fleeing a traffic stop has filed a lawsuit accusing the state constable who shot him of using excessive force. Brandon Domonique Fludd was shot three times by Florence police volunteer constable Christopher Bachochin, who fired eight shots into Fludd's door as he tried to speed away from a traffic stop in March 2018. The lawsuit said the use of force was unjustified. Bachochin told investigators he thought he was in danger but the lawsuit says body camera footage doesn't corroborate Bachochin's statements. A police spokeswoman declined to comment on the lawsuit. Bachochin didn't immediately respond to comment requests.
Girl, 14, killed after car with 6 juveniles runs stop sign