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Greenville South Carolina Criminal Defense Blog

Halloween is a spooky time for vandalism charges

October can be one of the most eventful months of the year for many college students. Young adults are ready to throw multiple celebrations as Halloween approaches now that the old and new students have settled in. There are plenty of parties offered on and off campus that everyone dresses up to attend to.

With the increasing chaos around campus, police officers become more active around the closing months of October to observe any suspicious activity from the students. While everyone is aware of the increase in DUI arrests around this holiday, some also forget that property damage drastically increases during the festivities. Insurance claims filed around Halloween can rise up to nearly 20 percent from all of the mischief caused by both children and fellow students. It is important to be aware of potential criminal charges if your friends try to get you involved in one of their schemes.

What you need to know about South Carolina record expungement

If you have a criminal record, it can be difficult to live a normal lifestyle. Applying for jobs and completing background checks are troublesome and can hinder you from doing what you want. Fortunately, South Carolina courts may be able to offer some relief.

Depending on your crime and your history, you may be able to have your record expunged. Expungement occurs when a court order removes an arrest or offense from your criminal record, which means that future employers or individuals who run background checks will not be able to see the offense that you had expunged.

Pyramid schemes work by bringing in new money

The term pyramid scheme refers to a scam where a small group of early investors profits from contributions by a large group of people who join late. South Carolina investors might benefit from knowing how pyramid schemes work and what distinguishes them from Ponzi schemes.

Typically, a pyramid scheme begins when a person or a small group of people puts up some money or starts a company. The venture is pitched as an opportunity to make money fast, and new members pay fees to join. Money from new investors is used to pay off old investors. There is usually no product or service offered by the company, or a product or service is offered but most revenues come from new people joining. Eventually, it grows harder to bring in new members. When members try to cash out, they find there is not enough money there to pay them.

South Carolina man admits he tried to buy a bomb

A 35-year-old South Carolina man faces up to 10 years in a federal prison after admitting that he attempted to purchase a bomb as part of a plot to kill two of his former co-workers. His guilty plea was entered during a Sept. 14 change of plea hearing and announced by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of South Carolina. The Easley resident, who will learn his fate after a federal judge reviews the case, has been held without bail since being taken into custody in March.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation began investigating the man after a concerned individual reported that he planned to blow up a Pickens County business. The individual is said to have told the FBI that the man was angry at his employer and his colleagues after being fired. Reports suggest that the man may have also had a racial motive as the workers he became embroiled in a dispute with were referred to as being of a different race in media accounts.

South Carolina woman’s arrest brings back recording debate

In a recent blog post, we touched upon the importance that a police officer’s video recording plays in the courtroom. However, it is crucial to remember that cops are not the only ones that can record everything in a crime scene. An establishment might have some security footage in the event of a robbery and some traffic lights have cameras implanted upon them to document any traffic violations.

One of the more often debated methods of legitimate evidence is if the accused or a bystander can record the video. Many citizens try to record the arrest in order to bolster their defenses or demonstrate poor behavior of the local police. A recent arrest in Rock Hill has brought the right to record law enforcement back into the spotlight in South Carolina, so it is imperative that you know how the law currently stands on this matter.

How does a grand jury work?

York County prosecutors had a busy month last June. The elevated overall numbers for the month were likely due to just one day when there were 904 indictments. That number for just one day doubled any previous month’s total for 2018. To reach that many indictments in one month, meant that the average time for each indictment in June was just 39 seconds.

Due to the number of indictments and the time constraints involved for each one, a group of defense lawyers from York County claim the grand jury was not able to adequately review each case and they want every indictment for the month of June tossed out. However, the top prosecutor for York County said there is no evidence to show the grand jury did not properly review the cases.

How video recordings can help your DUI case

South Carolina courts want to make certain that the residents officers are pulling off the streets are completely guilty of driving under the influence. If you ever become the defendant of a DUI case, the prosecution will not hesitate to take any form of evidence that can prove you were operating a vehicle while drunk.

What makes South Carolina unique from other states is the role video recordings play in the proceedings. The Palmetto State requires officers to record video footage of the defendant's arrest after testing them and reading them their Miranda rights. While this does help the prosecution prove their case faster, it can turn against them and can help your defense if they do not record properly.

Restaurant owner faces tax evasion charges

The owner of Jackson's Southern Kitchen in South Carolina is facing charges of tax evasion related to underreporting income on sales tax returns. He is alleged to have omitted $2.7 million in sales, which means that he evaded paying $213,000 in sales taxes. A sign posted at the Sunset Boulevard establishment said that it was closed because of unforeseen circumstances and would reopen soon.

The man had been taken to Lexington County Detention Center where he was eventually bonded out. He faces a fine of $10,000 and five years in prison for each of the four counts against him. A statement from the South Carolina Department of Revenue said that taking action against those who don't pay taxes means others won't have to pay more.

Steps continue to be taken to end debtors' prison

In June 2017, the American Civil Liberties Union in South Carolina issued a lawsuit against Lexington County with an accusation it is continuing to run modern day “debtor prisons.” The lawsuit aimed to keep the courts from putting people in jail because they are not able to pay fines or fees.

The ACLU believes that the actions in Lexington County imprison people simply because they live below the poverty line. There were five plaintiffs who the ACLU claimed were jailed for weeks without warning due to the fact they did not pay fines for misdemeanor court fees and traffic tickets.

Man held in connection with South Carolina apartment murder

Police in South Carolina have reported that a suspect has been taken into custody in connection with a fatal shooting in York County on the morning of Aug. 12, but they have not revealed what led them to believe that the 32-year-old Connecticut man was the shooter. Prosecutors also failed to introduce any evidence linking the man with the homicide he allegedly committed during his Aug. 17 arraignment hearing. The man has been charged with murder and weapons possession and faces a custodial sentence of between 30 years and life if convicted.

According to local media accounts, officers from the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department responded to reports of a shooting at a Celanese Road apartment building in Rock Hill at approximately 11:30 a.m. They arrived to discover that a 36-year-old man had been shot and killed inside his apartment. Police say that the man's assailant had shot him several times to make sure that he did not survive the encounter. Police announced a short time later that a person of interest was being sought in connection with the crime, but they did not reveal what may have led to the breakthrough.

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William G. Yarborough Attorney at Law
522 N. Church St.
Greenville, SC 29601

Toll Free: 800-469-3658
Phone: 864-326-3026
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William G. Yarborough Attorney at Law