Public news and announcements are brought to you by the Horry County Public Information Office.
On September 20, 2013
in Weekly Update
On September 20, 2013
in Events, General
On September 19, 2013
Conway, South Carolina-Before the Honorable Larry B. Hyman, Jr. on Tuesday, September 17, 2013, Defendant Maurice Wallace Ward was found guilty by a jury of his peers for the 2010 burglary of Freewill Baptist Church located in the Conway section of Horry County.
The incident occurred on the night of August 14, 2010, when Ward entered Freewill Baptist Church without consent and with the intent to steal personal items from the building. During the investigation, the officers discovered DNA left behind on a broken window believed to be Ward’s forced-entry location on the night of the incident. After a long investigation, the DNA testing results returned as a match to Ward’s. These results were later verified through further analysis, thus, placing Ward at the scene of the crime on the night the burglary occurred.
Based on the facts provided above and Ward’s lengthy criminal records, including two past burglary/housebreaking convictions, Ward was convicted of Second Degree Burglary (Violent) and sentenced by Judge Hyman to serve the maximum sentence of 15 years. This is a “violent” and “serious” Class D felony offense under South Carolina law, meaning this conviction adds a “strike” to Ward’s criminal record under South Carolina’s “three strike” laws.
For questions concerning this criminal trial and conviction, please contact the Horry County Solicitor's Office at 843-915-5460.
Over the past year, Watts has
been a danger to our community and a constant cause of disruption and crime
along the Grand Strand. Starting on December
1, 2012, Watts attacked a victim inside Club Crush in the Myrtle Beach section
of Horry County. An investigation
revealed that there was an ongoing dispute between Watts and the victim. Inside the club, Watts grabbed the victim and
when the victim pulled away from him, Watts produced a small caliber handgun
and began firing at the victim, striking him at least once, from the rear as
Watts chased him outside the club. As
Watts continued to pursue the victim into the parking lot, gun in hand, a
security officer was forced to deploy his sidearm. The security officer instructed Watts to drop
the handgun and when Watts refused, the security officer fired several shots,
striking Watts. Watts was loaded into a
truck by friends and was eventually taken to Grand Strand Regional Medical
Center where he was treated after giving a false name. Upon his release from the hospital, Watts was
arrested and charged, eventually posting bond and being released from J Reuben
Long Detention Center.
While out on bond, Watts was
arrested on marijuana charges in February 2013 and released on bond again. Subsequently, in April 2013, Troopers with
the South Carolina Highway Patrol attempted to conduct a traffic stop on a
vehicle Watts was operating, for a moving violation. Watts fled in the vehicle into a motel
parking lot, where he hopped out of the vehicle, leaving the vehicle to
continue moving and strike the motel near the lobby. Troopers pursued Watts and eventually
apprehended him. While searching the
area, Troopers found approximately 40 bindles of Heroin Watts had attempted to
hide. Upon apprehension, Watts
threatened the Trooper, telling the Trooper he ought to “Whoop his ass like his
friend whooped another Trooper’s ass.”
After being released from handcuffs at J Reuben Long Detention Center,
Watts attempted to lunge at the Trooper to assault the Trooper, before being
restrained by Detention Officers.
Watts was eventually freed on
$150,000 bond on or about May 17, 2013.
While out on bond, Watts was arrested again on weapons and marijuana
charges on or about May 23, 2013. His
bond was revoked and Watts was held at J. Reuben Long Detention Center
disposition of his charges. Watts has an
extensive prior record including numerous convictions for drugs and a federal
charge of Felon in Possession of a Firearm.
For questions concerning these
convictions, please contact the Horry County Solicitor's Office at 843-915-5460.
On September 17, 2013
in County News, Public Safety
Randy Webster, Horry County’s Emergency Management Director, cautioned that such systems are only as good as the telephone database supporting them. “Although the system houses a database populated from multiple sources, if your phone number is not in the database, you will not be called,” stated Webster. The CodeRED system gives individuals and businesses the ability to add their own phone numbers directly to the system’s telephone database. The system allows you to enter as many phone numbers as you need for other family members or employees at your business by re-entering your information. The system also allows you to enter email addresses as the emergency notification can be broadcasted by phone, text or email.
To ensure no one is omitted, Webster urges all individuals and businesses to log onto Horry County’s website and follow the link to the “CodeRED Residential and Business Data Collection” page. Your contact information will remain private and will only be used for emergency notifications. Those without internet access may call the Horry County Public Information Office at (843) 915-5390, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to give their information over the phone to be added to the CodeRED system. Required information includes first and last name, street address (physical address, no P.O. Boxes), city, state, zip code, primary phone number (if a cell phone number is used, you will need the name of your cell phone provider) and additional phone numbers are optional.
Again, no one should automatically assume his or her phone number is included. All businesses should register, as well as all individuals who have unlisted phone numbers, who have changed their phone number or address within the last year, and who use a cellular phone as their primary home phone. Since the system is a geographical based notification system, street addresses are needed to select which phone numbers will receive emergency notification calls in any given situation.
Horry County will conduct an “All Call” validation test beginning at 10 a.m. on Monday, September 23. Numbers that are registered in the system will get a call from Horry County, which will be a test of the CodeRED emergency system. The “All Call” will scrub the database of numbers that cannot be confirmed as valid and will be removed from the system. This will create a cleaner list resulting in more connected calls and less network congestion when a real emergency happens.
Other CodeRED features:
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