Richland County

UPDATE: Coroner identifies person killed on S.C. Highway 277

The pedestrian killed after being struck by a vehicle on S.C. Highway 277 Tuesday night was a Columbia teenager. Christopher Darnell Smith, 15, died at the scene of the incident from multiple injuries, according to Richland County Coroner Gary Watts. Columbia police said Smith was hit around 9 p.m. near the James Clyburn Pedestrian Bridge. Police still are investigating the incident….

Wednesday’s inauguration to affect traffic

Gov. Nikki Haley will take the oath of office and officially begin her second term Wednesday in a ceremony to be held at the State House. Beginning at 7 a.m. Wednesday, the following roads will be closed: Sumter Street between Gervais and Pendleton streets Senate Street between Sumter and Bull streets Marion Avenue between Senate and Gervais streets The roads will reopen…

City of Columbia selected as finalist in $5 million Knight Cities Challenge

The city of Columbia has been named one of 126 finalists for the Knight Cities Challenge, a $5 million initiative to build culture in communities across the country. Coble Plaza (photo provided) More than 7,000 entries came from local governments, urban planners, organizations and individuals with ideas on how to shape the future of their cities, including transforming public spaces…

Columbia names city’s first poet laureate

A University of South Carolina professor is now also the city of Columbia’s first poet laureate. Ed Madden is the city of Columbia’s first poet laureate. (photo provided) Ed Madden will serve a four-year term beginning this month. In the role, he will “encourage appreciation and create opportunities for dissemination of poetry in Columbia, promote the appreciation and knowledge of poetry…

Richland County Sheriff’s lieutenant honored by Midlands Coalition of Churches

The Midlands Coalition of Churches chose Lt. Curtis Wilson of the Richland County Sheriff’s Department as the newest winner of its annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Drum Major for Justice Award. Chief Deputy Wash James (from left); Lt. Curtis Wilson’s mother in law, Peggy Young; Wilson’s son, Chaz Wilson; Wilson’s wife, Kecia Wilson and Wilson (photo provided) State Sen. John…

COMET restores 3 bus lines for commuters in north Columbia

Richland County’s transportation penny program is providing the funding the COMET needs to restore some previous routes that were eliminated in 2010 and 2012 because of budget cuts. The transit system announced three additional routes for residents living in North Columbia. “This now effectively covers all of the areas that lost service in 2012 but more importantly restores service at an…

Curtain rises on Irmo High School’s Center for the Arts

Students took center stage Friday night in Irmo at the first-ever Gold Carpet Gala. The celebration of budding talent officially opened the Center for the Arts at Irmo High. “Students have been really energized and excited,” said Irmo High School Principal David Riegel. A gallery of student artwork welcomes visitors. (photo by Rachel Ham) The 600-seat, state-of-the-art facility was made possible…

Ridge View High School gets $40,000 state-of-the-art ‘flipped’ classroom

Students in the Ridge View High School arts department were thrilled Thursday to step into their completely revamped classroom that was “flipped” by local furniture company McWaters. Arts teacher Wendy Wimmer was picked by to win the company’s first-ever sponsored “Flip My Classroom” contest for a $40,000 classroom makeover. Students tried out the new desks and 72 inch TV in…

Richland Library offers job seekers fresh start with new clothes

Job seekers visited Richland Library’s Business and Job Center on Thursday to get a fresh start in the workplace with new clothes. The library held its first-ever “The Open Closet” event to give visitors an opportunity to find outfits for interviews, business meetings and social networking. Career coaches Iris Abney (left) and Slyvie Golod (right) look over an outfit (photo…

‘Hindsight is a wonderful thing,’ says lawyer for Irmo doctor who abandoned dog

An Irmo doctor who has received criticism and alleged threats of violence after abandoning a dog in Florida has retained a lawyer to represent him in the case, though no criminal charges have been filed. Roman as he was found by Janelle Marcello (photo provided) Dr. William Odom admits he left Roman, a 1-year-old German Shepherd, tied to a telephone…

Fire damages King Street home

Columbia firefighters said improperly discarded smoking material caused a fire that damaged a King Street duplex early Wednesday morning. Columbia firefighters battled flames at a King St. duplex before dawn Wednesday (photo provided). Firefighters arrived at 1113 King St. around 3 a.m. to find the duplex in flames. They put out the fire, which caused an estimated $45,ooo in damages….

Re-elected Richland County Council members reflect on past year during swearing in ceremony

Five Richland County Council members reclaimed their seats in a swearing-in ceremony months after being re-elected in the November election. Seth Rose, Gregory Pearce, Norman Jackson, Bill Malinowski and Paul Livingston took the oath Tuesday afternoon for a four-year term on council. Torrey Rush, who represents District 7, was elected to serve as chairman for 2015. Pearce, who first was…

City of Columbia ‘finally sticking a shovel in the ground’ for Spirit Communications Park baseball stadium

Columbia city officials, community leaders and the Columbia Commons project developers gathered Tuesday morning to shuck dirt from a would-be baseball mound to celebrate the official groundbreaking of the Spirit Communications Park stadium. A future minor league baseball team means Columbia’s “time is now,” according to Mayor Steve Benjamin. Mayor Steve Benjamin celebrates the groundbreaking of Spirit Communications Park stadium Monday….

Columbia Planning Commission approves proposal for privately owned student dorms near Williams-Brice Stadium

University of South Carolina students can add one more option to their list of housing choices. The Columbia Planning Commission on Monday approved the development of a privately owned 792-bedroom student dormitory near Williams-Brice Stadium. A rendering of the proposed dorms on National Guard Road (photo provided) The dorm will sit on just more 25 acres and will consist of 198…

Richland County Councilwoman Joyce Dickerson elected to serve on board of national women legislators organization

Richland County Councilwoman Joyce Dickerson will continue her leadership in a national organization dedicated to increasing female participation in government. Dickerson recently was elected to serve as immediate past chairwoman on the Board of Directors for the National Foundation for Women Legislators. Richland County Councilwoman Joyce Dickerson (photo provided) “It is with great pleasure that I have the opportunity to…

Forest Acres house fire leaves 1 person displaced

An electrical problem caused a fire at a Forest Acres home Saturday morning, according to the Columbia Fire Department. The inside of the Verner St. home after the fire (photo provided) Firefighters responded to a call around 5 a.m. at 3720 Verner St. and found heavy black smoke coming from the house. They entered the home and quickly extinguished the…

2015: A look at development in the Midlands

Lexington School District Two multi-year renovation Lexington School District Two is moving forward quickly with plans to build new schools and renovate existing ones after voters approved a bond referendum on the Nov. 4 ballot. The district recently purchased two tracts of land for two brand-new campuses. A new home for B-C Grammar No. 1, Saluda River Academy for the Arts…

More than 48,000 Richland County residents to get new larger recycling carts in January

Residents in the northern part of Richland County soon will replace their red recycling bins for large lime green carts. The county’s Solid Waste and Recycling announced Tuesday that roll carts will be delivered to more than 48,000 residents, marking the third and final phase of the department’s plan to increase recycling in the county. “Richland County Council and the…

Man killed in Forest Acres shooting

Forest Acres police are searching for clues in a fatal Monday night shooting. A pedestrian walking on Percival Road near Dellwood Drive found Kenneth Hinckley, 49, dead by the roadside and called police. Hinckley died of a gunshot wound to the upper body, according to Richland County Coroner Gary Watts. Police said nearby residents reporting hearing an argument and then…

2015: A look ahead at funded, unfunded penny tax projects

Voters in Lexington County struck down a penny sales tax designed to pay for myriad projects around the county that included roads and water lines. Without the millions of tax revenue estimated to be generated by the tax, several smaller municipalities will be looking for other means to pay for their high-priority items submitted during the penny sales tax process. The city…

UPDATE: Coroner identifies 2 men killed in Elgin shooting

Richland County sheriff’s deputies are investigating a Friday shooting in which two men were killed in Elgin. An acquaintance of the men found them around 9 p.m. at an Archer Avenue home and called deputies. Both men were declared dead at the scene. Richland County Coroner Gary Watts confirmed that Tyron Richardson, 55, and Mark Cox, 28, died of gunshot…