Richland County

UPDATE: Coroner identifies person found dead near parking garage on USC campus

Richland County Coroner Gary Watts said a man found dead on the University of South Carolina campus Thursday morning was killed by injuries sustained in a fall from a significant height. Watts identified the dead person as 26-year-old Oliver Sherlock Holmes of Columbia. USC police responded around 5 a.m. after Holmes’ body was found near the Bull Street parking garage at…

Richland Two school board proposes alternative program for students who commit sexual offenses

Richland Two school board members got a first look at a proposed program that offers an alternative to students who have committed sexual offenses. Inspiration for the intervention program was sparked because of concern about increased instances of issues regarding “sexting” and other sexual offenses among students that resulted in expulsions or referrals to Blythewood Academy, the district’s alternative school. “The…

Photo gallery: Commencement week kicks off for Richland One schools

  Dreher High School closed out the first day of commencement exercises for Richland School District One. More than 250 students accepted their diploma as they celebrated the completion of their high school experience. Dreher valedictorian Austin Konkle reminded his classmates of their journey to graduation, from tests to study sessions, that made the past four years worth it. Klonke…

Columbia Museum of Art offers free admission until June 5

Visitors to the Columbia Museum of Art can take advantage of free admission through next week. BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina is sponsoring admission for all visitors from now until June 5 to reward the efforts of the city of Columbia and Richland County officials to support the art museum. Guests will be able to access to the museum’s collection…

Columbia police gather donated fans, air conditioners to help those in need

Columbia police officers are working to make sure those in need in Columbia have help dealing with the summer heat. Columbia police officers distributed fans and air conditioners during last year’s event. (photo provided) The police department is accepting donations for its annual Fan the Heat Program, which has helped more than 7,000 people since its inception in 1995. It…

Richland County deputies search for suspect after shooting off Broad River Road

Richland County sheriff’s deputies are investigating a shooting that left one man injured Tuesday afternoon. Deputies responded around 12:30 p.m. to the Richland Terrace apartment complex at 1212 Metze Road, which is off Broad River Road. They found a man suffering from a gunshot wound. The wounded man was taken to a local hospital, but deputies said his injuries did…

Blythewood assisted-care patient accused of attempted murder

Richland County sheriff’s deputies arrested a patient at an assisted-living home for allegedly stabbing another patient. Richard Benson (photo provided) Richard Benson, 71, is charged with attempted murder. Deputies responded to Carson Community Care on Farrow Road in Blythewood around 6 a.m. Monday and found a female patient suffering from multiple stab wounds to her lower body. Benson allegedly entered…

Columbia Urban League seeks to expand summer work program to 1,000 students

The Columbia Urban League seeks to expand its summer work program for the city’s youth to 1,000 students this summer. The nonprofit’s Summer Work Experience Leadership Program is a partnership that creates job opportunities with local businesses and city hall. “A lot of money has been reappropriated to incarcerate,” said Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin. “I guarantee that you will see…

Authorities search for carjacking suspects

Richland County sheriff’s deputies and Columbia police officers are looking for suspects wanted in connection with a carjacking and with firing shots in a local neighborhood. Deputies responded to a home on Carlton Drive around midnight Sunday. A juvenile resident of the home said friends of his arrived at his home in a black Toyota pickup truck and asked him…

South Carolina Bar honors Dreher student, Eau Claire High School

Richland School District One stood out this year in giving students a glimpse into the state’s legal system and is well represented in the South Carolina Bar’s annual awards. Nick Seymour is the Bar’s Law Related Education Division’s 2015 Citizen of the Year. (photo provided) The Bar’s Law Related Education Division named Dreher High School senior Nick Seymour the 2015 Citizen of…

Questions arise over minority business participation during Richland County transportation talks

Richland County’s billion-dollar transportation penny program coordinators tout a mission of hiring small and local businesses to keep the penny sales tax revenue within the county. But several members of the county’s transportation penny advisory committee say they fear the program won’t extend contracting jobs to minority businesses equally. The Richland County Transportation Penny Advisory Committee meet to discuss the…

Blythewood Historical Society to host veterans tribute Sunday

Residents are invited to Blythewood this weekend to pay tribute to those who have served in the U.S. military. The Blythewood Historical Society is hosting a Memorial Day program complete with flag retirement ceremony on Sunday inside the Langford-Nord House on McNulty Street. Festivities are set to begin at 3:30 p.m. The event schedule includes patriotic readings, public recognition of veterans by branch…

Sheriff Leon Lott offers look at deputy hiring process

Not just anyone can be a Richland County sheriff’s deputy. With law enforcement officers under increased scrutiny, Sheriff Leon Lott on Wednesday allowed Cola Daily to sit in on the next-to-last step in the hiring process for deputy candidates. Five deputies and two Citizens’ Advisory Council members form the interview panel. (photo by Allen Wallace) ” ‘Unity in the Community’…

Richland County transportation officials: ‘We have nothing to hide’ from audit of penny tax program

Richland County transportation officials said they welcome an audit from the state’s Department of Revenue, which will inspect the $1 billion penny transportation program. “We do everything above the board and by the book,” said county Transportation Department Director Rob Perry. “If there’s a way to make ourselves more efficient, we’re all for it. We’re going to give them whatever…

Richland County deputies search for burglary suspect

Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott is asking for help from the community to identify a burglary suspect. The person in this surveillance photo is wanted in connection with a burglary. (photo provided) The male suspect allegedly broke into a Deerwood Street home Sunday around 1:30 p.m. and stole $35 cash. Lott said the same suspect tried to break into the same home…

Columbia residents balk at proposed increases in water and sewer bills, franchise fees

The city of Columbia faces an uphill battle to convince residents that an increase in SCE&G’s franchise fee is best for the city’s budget. Some residents slammed the city’s plan to raise the fee from 3 percent to 5 percent during Tuesday’s public hearing. “This is a tax increase it’s just being called by a different name,” said resident Jim Reid….

Firefighters: Poor wiring, overuse of extension cords caused Huger Street fire

A fire caused an estimated $200,000 in damages to a Huger Street warehouse, and it started because of a combination of poor wiring and overuse of extension cords, according to an investigation conducted by the Columbia Fire Department. Columbia firefighters were on the scene of the warehouse fire on Huger Street as the sun rose Wednesday. (file photo provided) Capt. Brick…

Police arrest 14-year-old in connection with shooting near Eau Claire High School

Columbia police arrested a 14-year-old in connection with a shooting Tuesday on Hanover Avenue. The 14-year-old male, whose name will not be released because of his age, faces charges of assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature, unlawful carrying of a handgun and unlawful carrying of a handgun by a person under 18. The teen allegedly shot a person…

Crime Notebook: Man wanted for failure to pay $24,000 in child support; woman accused of stealing pain killers from pharmacy

Man accused of failure to pay child support Dwayne Eigner is wanted for failure to pay child support. (photo provided) Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott is asking for help to find what he calls a “deadbeat parent.” Dwayne Eigner, 42, is wanted for not paying child support in excess of $24,000. Lott says children are the true victims when people do…

Columbia City councilman pushes for measure to eliminate tax-exempt status for some nonprofits

Columbia City Councilman Moe Baddourah is leading the push to eliminate the exemption for some nonprofits to avoid paying business license fees and taxes. The restaurant owner says he thinks it will create fair competition and be a revenue generator to pad the city’s already stretched budget. “There is revenue on the table and we can get it if this…

Fire damages Huger Street warehouse

Fire damaged a warehouse on Huger Street in Columbia early Wednesday morning. Columbia firefighters were on the scene of the warehouse fire on Huger Street as the sun rose Wednesday. (photo provided) The Columbia Fire Department responded to 425 Huger St. at 4:10 a.m. after a Columbia police officer saw the fire and called for help. The fire burned wooden…

Irmo Chapin Recreation Commission begins ‘next chapter’ at Seven Oaks Park

A park built in 1973 has gotten a facelift in recent months, and the results were unveiled to the public Tuesday afternoon. Local students, elected officials, senior citizens and parents gathered at Seven Oaks Park to celebrate its reopening and check out its new features. Park Director John Cantey said the Irmo Chapin Recreation Commission park is the site of countless daily activities…

1 person wounded in shooting near Eau Claire High School

Columbia police are investigating a shooting that left one person wounded Tuesday afternoon. Police responded to the 300 block of Hanover Avenue shortly before 5 p.m. and found the wounded person, who was transported to a local hospital to be treated. His wounds did not appear to be life-threatening, according to officers. Officers spoke to people in the area and…