Review Category : Beaufort News

News Briefs

Suspect wanted in assault of cab driver

A suspect has been identified in the September 28 assault of a cab driver on Old Bailey Road.

Shykeim Raykwan Wright, 18, of Grays Hill is wanted on one count of assault and battery high and aggravated for the attack that left a 63-year-old cab driver hospitalized with severe facial injuries.

The victim, a driver for Maude’s Cab service, reported that he’d picked up a young black male from Ben Allen Road in Grays Hill that Sunday morning and drove him to Old Bailey’s Road as requested. The two men talked as he drove, with no indication of anything amiss.

However, as they approached the area of Blueberry Lane on Old Bailey’s Road, Wright suddenly attacked the driver without provocation, striking him in the head with a hammer. Wright got out of the vehicle and the victim tried to drive away, but Wright continued to assault him, smashing the windows of the vehicle with a rock and beating the victim about the head and face.

The victim was eventually able to disengage and drove a short distance, pulling into a private driveway and honking the horn to summon help as Wright fled the area on foot.

The motive for the attack remains unknown, and nothing was reportedly stolen. Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Shykeim Raykwan Wright is asked to call either Investigator Sgt. B. Cooler at 843-255-3423 or Crimestoppers at 1-888-CRIME-SC. Wright is a black male, approximately 5’06”, 175 lbs with a 2-3” afro hairstyle. His last known address is 14 Ben Allen Road.

Wright is also wanted on two unrelated counts of Pointing and Presenting a Firearm for an incident in July 2014, during which he allegedly brandished a weapon and threatened to kill two victims at 19 Walter Drive in Burton. Due to the violent nature of Wright’s offenses, he should be considered as potentially armed and dangerous.

 

Shooting in Seabrook still under investigation

The Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office is continuing the investigation into a shooting incident in Seabrook that left one man injured on Sunday, Oct. 12.

Just after 7 p.m., deputies responded to the area of the Whale Branch bridge in reference to a reported gunshot victim. Deputies located a white Chevy Malibu occupied by three subjects nearby on Fieldfare Way. The backseat passenger was a 28-year-old black male suffering from a gunshot wound to the back.

The driver and front seat passenger of the vehicle advised that they had been at a house party on Delaney Circle and decided to leave. As they were leaving, they heard several subjects arguing. An unknown male then jumped into the back seat of the car and yelled to get him out of there.

As the three men drove away, unknown suspect(s) began shooting at the vehicle. They drove to Hwy 21 then turned onto Fieldfare Way, pursued by the suspects in an unknown vehicle, who continued to shoot at them. Multiple shots were fired, one of which entered the vehicle and struck the back seat passenger.

The driver pulled over and called for help, rendering aid to the victim until deputies arrived. The victim was transported to Beaufort Memorial Hospital where he remains in stable condition.

At this time, no suspect(s) have been identified. Anyone with information is asked to contact Investigator Cpl J. Malphrus at 843-255-3426 or Crimestoppers. To report crime, citizens can call Crimestoppers at 1-888-CRIME-SC (274-6372) or text the word TIPSC with a message to CRIMES (274637).

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CODA commemorates Domestic Violence Awareness Month

Citizens Opposed to Domestic Abuse (CODA) is supporting a number of events this October for National Domestic Violence Awareness Month to encourage the community to get involved and to learn more about the impact of domestic violence by attending these events. Some of these events are open to the public:

• The Clothesline Project, a display featuring T-shirts designed by domestic violence survivors, at the Beaufort, Hampton and Jasper county libraries during all of October.

• Wedding Gown Project, a display featuring wedding dresses bearing witness to the fact that while many walk into marriage full of hope, the reality of domestic violence shatters their innocence. The dresses are adorned with the names of those who have died at the hands of their partners in South Carolina from 2011-2013. These will be displayed in Hampton, Colleton and Jasper county courthouses during all of October.

• Farmer’s Market awareness tent (Port Royal, October 25, 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Walterboro, October 18, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Bluffton, October 23, from noon to 6 p.m.).

• A Light in the Window: Businesses and community members in Hampton County have agreed to display a purple candle in their front windows throughout the month of October to draw awareness to domestic violence in their community.

• Stand in the Sand: Zonta is hosting this event, and will have speakers, a walk, and candlelight vigil. Coligny Beach, Hilton Head Island, October 11 at 6 p.m.

• Candlelight Vigil and Awareness Event: Beaufort High School football game (October 17 at 7:30 p.m.).

• Candlelight Vigil and Awareness Event: Ridgeland/Hardeeville High School football game hosted by the Jasper County Domestic Violence Coordinating Council (October 31 at 7:30 p.m.).

• Trinity Health and Fitness Pilates Fundraiser: Trinity Fitness Moss Creek Village, October 18 and 25, Bluffton at 9 a.m. (all proceeds to CODA).

• St. Mark’s Paper Drive for CODA, (diapers, paper towels, toilet paper, Kleenex), St. Mark’s Church, Beaufort, all month.

Whether we realize it or not, we all know someone who has experienced domestic violence. By attending these events, the community will show support for survivors, mourn those who have lost their lives and send a message that we must work together to stop domestic violence in the Lowcountry.

CODA has been providing an array of services to victims of intimate partner abuse and their children in Beaufort, Colleton, Hampton and Jasper counties for more than 28 years. In 2013, CODA provided 146 survivors and their children with emergency shelter for a total of 4,832 nights. The nonprofit also answered 3,353 calls on the 24-hour hotline and provided outreach services such as counseling, case management, legal assistance and transitional housing to 261 survivors. Please visit www.codalowcountry.org to learn more about domestic violence and CODA’s services.

SC DOMESTIC VIOLENCE STATS

 Victims of domestic violence come from all walks of life — all cultures, all income groups, all ages, and all religions. They share feelings of helplessness, isolation, guilt, fear and shame and often these incidents go unreported to law enforcement. Domestic violence affects women, men and children of all ages without prejudice.

According to the South Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault website, an annual report based on information obtained from the most recent Supplementary Homicide Report data submitted to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) shows the numbers for 2011, which  are the most recent statistics available, and the ranking is calculated according to the homicide rate per 100,000 people in the state.

• 61 females were murdered by males in South Carolina in 2011, a total of 2.54 per 100,000. This is more than twice the national per capita rate of 1.17 per 100,000.

• Four of the female homicide victims were 18 years of age or younger, and the average homicide victim age was 38 years old.

• Of these victims, 22 were black, and 39 were white.

• For those homicides in which the victim to offender relationship could be identified, 93% of reported homicides (52 out of 56 identified) were murdered by someone they knew.

• Of the homicide victims who knew their offenders, 63% (33 victims) were murdered by a male that was their husband, common-law-husband, ex-husband, boyfriend, or ex-boyfriend.

• South Carolina has been in the top 10 of women killed by men for the past 15 years, and this is the third time at the top spot in the nation.

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LIBPA to host school board candidates’ forum

On Tuesday, October 14 at 8 a.m. in the Beaufort Realtor’s Association Headquarters (located to the rear of BB&T on Lady’s Island Drive) Lady’s Island Business and Professional Association will conduct a forum for the two candidates seeking to represent District 2 on the Beaufort County School Board. The meeting is open to the public.

Mr. Bill Evans, a petition candidate, is the present incumbent and Mr. Terry Thomas is a write-in candidate. As with all LIBPA candidate forums, the order of speaking will be alphabetical, each candidate will be allowed 10 minutes to speak on any subject they choose to address, the remaining time will be devoted to questions and answers. Following the question and answer period, each candidate will be provided three minutes for a final summary.

The following subjects may be of interest to forum attendees during the question and answer period:

• Should the school district become a taxing authority?

• What is the proper role of the school board in regard to the school district?

• Opinion of Common Corps Standards and the new South Carolina standards presently being developed.

• How to best cope with the effect of poverty on education.

• Action needed to improve Beaufort County schools.

• Opinion of charter schools.

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Local NAACP to sponsor two political forums

The upcoming  Nov. 4  Beaufort City Council and S.C. State Superintendent of Education races will be spotlighted during two political forums, which are being sponsored by the The Burton-Dale-Beaufort Branch NAACP in collaboration with the Beaufort County Black Chamber of Commerce and  The Gullah Sentinel.

Former Beaufort County School Board Chairman Fred S. Washington, Jr. — who was the last African-American to serve on Beaufort’s City Council — will serve as the moderator for the Beaufort City Council candidates forum It will be held at the Technical College of the Lowcountry’s Bldg. 12, on Monday, Oct. 20, at 6 p.m., according to Burton-Dale-Beaufort NAACP President Darryl T. Murphy.

Gullah Festival of South Carolina co-founder Charlotte Pazant Brown, and retired educator and community activist George Singleton will serve as panelists for the much-watched, non-partisan battle over two seats between Beaufort City Council candidates Phil Comer, Stephen Murray, former Mayor Bill Rauch, and incumbent City Councilwoman Donnie Beer.

And on Tuesday Oct. 28 at 6 p.m., former Beaufort County School District Superintendent Herman K. Gaither will be the moderator of the S.C. State Superintendent of Education forum. It will also be held in TCL’s Bldg. 12.

Panelists for the event will be S.C. State NAACP Executive Director Dwight James, and popular  Beaufort County educator Dr. Valerie Jackson.

All three candidates for the office — Democrat Dr. Tom Thompson, Republican Molly Spearman, and the American Party’s Ed Murray — have accepted invitations to attend the forum, according to Clarence Daniel, Chairman of the NAACP’s Political Action Committee.

Both forums will be free, and open to the public. For more information, contact NAACP President Darryl T. Murphy at 843-271-0376.

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News Briefs

Document shredding event to be held Oct. 11

The Beaufort County Public Works Department of Solid Waste and Recycling is hosting a free document shredding event Saturday, October 11. The event will take place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Beaufort County Public Works Convenience Center at 80 Shanklin Road in Beaufort.

Any types or colors of paper, file folders, envelopes, etc. are acceptable to be collected during the event. Staples and paper clips do not need to be removed. Materials can be brought in any container or bag and will be emptied into roll carts for immediate and secure shredding. All documents will be shredded on-site as long as the trucks have capacity. No electronics will be collected at this event.

For questions, call the Solid Waste and Recycling office at 843-255-2744 or visit www.bcgov.net/recycle.

Survey seeks input on city service, website use 

A short online survey seeks public input about customer service at City Hall and the City of Beaufort’s website.

The survey takes only minutes to complete. It is available on the city website homepage under Quick Links. The questionnaire will remain open until Oct. 17.

“Over the next several months we will be talking internally about how we can provide a better experience to our customers,” Beaufort City Manager Scott Dadson said. “We are looking at what types of phone calls we receive, how quickly phone calls get returned, whether people can find what they need on our website, and how we can improve in all those areas.”

Responses to the survey will help shape customer service training for city employees as well as how the city’s website is refreshed and revised.

“Our goal is to provide the best service in the most efficient manner,” Dadson said. “This survey is designed to be simple, easy to complete, and will help us identify where we are strong and where we need to improve in both customer service and with our website. We have a lot going on, and it’s only going to get busier, but we cannot forget how important it is to help people and keep them informed.”

To find the survey, go to www.cityofbeaufort.org and click on Customer Service Survey.

Two men arrested on drug charges

On October 3, the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office arrested Edward Simmons and Robert Drayton on Drug Charges.

Deputies conducted a drug investigation into two locations off of Poppy Hill Road in Beaufort. The investigation consisted of numerous controlled purchases of illegal drugs from both locations. The primary subject was Robert Drayton who was supplying the drugs.  As a result of this investigation, search warrants were obtained for 11 Sandstone Circle and 20 Simmons Family Road.

As a result of the search at the Sandstone house, quantities of crack cocaine, cocaine, marijuana, weapons and currency were discovered and seized. Quantities of marijuana and alcohol were located and seized at the Simmons Family address.

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Beaufort planning staff reviews, tweaks Boundary Street Code

Hoping to stimulate private investment in the Boundary Street Redevelopment District by clarifying some development restrictions, Beaufort city planners continue to tweak the Boundary Street Code.

The Boundary Street Redevelopment District’s design standards were created to encourage and spur a predictable, walkable development pattern along the road to go hand-in-hand with the upcoming streetscape improvements that have been planned since 2006.

While still needing review and approval by the Beaufort City Council, the proposed code changes were discussed during a public hearing at the Sept. 23 City Council meeting, with more comments and discussion likely to take place at an October 21 council work session.

The city’s goal is to maintain the design integrity of the district, while making it possible for buildings to be constructed economically to encourage business growth along the corridor.

Beaufort is working on a $28 million project to renovate a section of Boundary Street, the gateway to Beaufort and the Sea Islands. Construction is expected to start in early 2015. The project, partly funded by a federal grant, will improve safety, aesthetics and curbside appeal of affected properties.

The seven fundamental goals of the Boundary Street Code are: Interconnect it all; Create traffic capacity with safety and character; Plan for feasible, phase-able pieces; Make Boundary a walkable “great street”; Grow a mix of uses and a mix of housing types; Assemble a green network; link marsh views; Grow a memorable entrance to Beaufort and its National Historic Landmark District.

“The desire of the city is to see the private investment keep pace with the publicly-funded infrastructure that we’ve been putting in place the last several years and will continue to do with the Boundary Street project,” Beaufort City Manager Scott Dadson said.

“We believe these code adjustments can help accomplish that and will make it easier and more economically feasible for people to do business and to start or expand their business in the Boundary Street Corridor.”

The Beaufort-Port Royal Metropolitan Planning Commission scheduled a workshop for Oct. 1 to discuss the proposed revisions. The commission is scheduled to make a recommendation on the proposed changes at their Oct. 20 meeting.

A number of changes to the Boundary Street Code have been proposed, some of them simple text clarifications and several of them “major changes,” according to Beaufort City Planning Director Libby Anderson.

The important changes address the following areas:

• Appeals process: Staff is proposing changing the appeal body from the Planning Commission to the Design Review Board (DRB). The purpose of the DRB is to review plans for new construction outside the Historic District, and so it is the appropriate board to consider appeals regarding design issues.

• SCDOT ownership of the majority of the roads: Staff is proposing changes that give staff more flexibility to adjust the build-to lines to accommodate building frontages that are not currently permitted in the SCDOT right-of-way. These include colonnades, arcades and balconies.

• Two-story building heights: Staff is proposing to eliminate the two-story requirement for non-residential buildings and apply a taller minimum first floor height for one-story buildings. This would apply in all areas except in a new two-story overlay zone, proposed to be located at the primary intersections of Ribaut Road/Boundary Street and Robert Smalls Parkway/Boundary Street. Mezzanines would be permitted to fulfill the two-story requirement in this area, and specific mezzanine standards are added to the code.

• Frontage goal:

o   A minimum goal requirement was added to regulate the percentage of building that should be built along the street frontage at the setback or build-to line. Generally it’s 60 percent in the more urban areas and 40 percent in the less urban areas. Staff felt that this was important because the Boundary Street Code is focusing on creating urban places, and the amount of street frontage that is comprised of buildings is a key part of this. Minimum frontage requirements are common standards in form-based codes.

o   Frontage elements such as arcades, colonnades, storefronts, porches, etc. were consolidated and clarified to eliminate confusion between general glazing requirements, and glazing requirements for specific frontage types.

• Window requirements: New language distinguishes glazing requirements for residential versus commercial construction.

Maximum parking requirement: This was added to the code so it now has minimum and maximum parking standards. There are maximum parking requirements in the city’s standard zoning districts, so it seemed reasonable to apply these same standards to the Boundary Street zone.

• Drive-Through Special Exception: These standards were updated and clarified as a result of several meetings regarding the proposed Starbucks coffee shop.

“We have met with developers, architects, and people involved and affected by the Boundary Street Redevelopment District,” Anderson said. “We have listened to their concerns. Our recommendations reflect what we think are the best ways to address those concerns while also protecting the goals of the Boundary Street Redevelopment District as it begins to take shape.

“As the mayor says so often, we must continually seek to preserve the ‘sense of place’ that is so important to Beaufort,” Anderson said. “It’s what attracted many of us to live here or to stay here, and it’s what keeps drawing people to Beaufort.”

For more information about this and other City of Beaufort projects, visit www.cityofbeaufort.org.

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News Briefs

County offers secure document shredding

The Beaufort County Public Works Department Solid Waste and Recycling section has established a shredding event for Saturday, October 11 from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. at the County Public Works Convenience Center located at 80 Shanklin Road, Beaufort, SC, 29906.

Any types or colors of paper, file folders, envelopes, etc are acceptable.  Staples and clips do not need to be removed. Materials can be brought in any container or bag and will be emptied into roll carts for immediate shredding. All materials will be shredded on site for as long as the trucks have capacity. NO electronics will be collected at this event.

If you have questions concerning the shredding event, please call the county Solid Waste and Recycling Division for more information at 843-255-2744 or www.bcgov.net/recycle.

Subway armed robbery investigation continues

The investigation into the armed robbery of a Beaufort restaurant continues.

Just after 9:15 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 28, an unknown black male entered the Subway sandwich shop located at 10 Sams Point Way on Lady’s Island, jumped onto the counter, brandished a handgun and demanded money from the 19-year-old female employee. After being given cash from the register, the suspect fled the store.

The suspect was described as a light-skinned black male between 20-24 years old, approximately 6’00”, 180 lbs, wearing a gray hooded sweatshirt with black gloves and a black mask.

Anyone with information is asked to contact either Investigator Sgt. A. Boland at 843-255-3707 or Crimestoppers at 1-888-CRIME-SC.

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Church’s annual pumpkin patch to open

With the start of fall, make this the perfect time to visit Carteret Street United Methodist Church’s annual Pumpkin Patch. Thousands of pumpkins will be delivered to the church on Sunday, Sept. 28, and the pumpkin patch will be open daily beginning Monday, Sept. 29, at 408 Carteret St. The Pumpkin Patch, sponsored by the Carteret Street Youth, is open to the public and offers pumpkins of all colors, shapes and sizes for sale. School trips are also available. All proceeds raised benefit the church’s youth ministries.

The church’s Annual Fall Bazaar is also just around the corner on Saturday, October 18, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. This year’s bazaar will have the many wonderful things folks have learned to expect and love at a fall bazaar including treasures in the Good Junque, a silent auction, tools, toys, games, baked and frozen foods, a Garden Shop with everything you need to prepare your lawn and garden, books, and handmade crafts. Don’t forget games for the kids and lunch for the whole family including good barbeque, hamburgers and hot dogs. All proceeds benefit the missions of the church.

For questions, please call the church office at 524-3841.

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County posts signs for lost pets

In an effort to return lost pets to their rightful owners, Beaufort County Animal Services has been posting new signs along roads countywide that read “ANIMAL FOUND” and give the number to call, 843-255-5010.

Last Monday, animal services posted its first sign on Hilton Head Island after a black Pit Bull was found wandering the streets. The dog wasn’t microchipped, and the county staff had no way of knowing who the owner was. Luckily, the dog’s owner saw the sign, called, and the two have since been reunited.

“We urge all animal owners to microchip because it’s the most efficient way to find the owner but if this hasn’t been done, and the animal gets loose these signs are another way to reconnect the owners with their lost pet,” said BCAS Director Tallulah Trice.

Anytime a stray is found, County Animal Services plans to post a sign at the closest major intersection.

For more information, go to www.bcgov.net/departments/Public-Safety or visit Beaufort County Animal Services’ Facebook page.

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Widow to accept Congressional Gold Medal on behalf of husband

Retired Marine Master Sgt. George Albert Jackson will posthumously receive the Congressional Gold Medal on Thursday, Oct. 2, at 11 a.m. at Helena Place Senior Living in Port Royal. His widow, Ella J. Jackson, will accept the award for her late husband. The late Master Sgt. Jackson is receiving the honor for being a Montford Point Marine. The Montford Point Marines were among the first African Americans in the United States Marine Corps who overcame racial prejudice to serve in WWII, Korea and Vietnam.

He volunteered to enter the Marine Corps on June 22, 1942.

In 1942, Montford Point Camp was established as the WWII recruit training site for all African American Marines.

Master Sgt. Jackson retired on March 31, 1969. Following his service, Master Sgt. Jackson became a founding member of the Montford Point Marine Association, Inc., Beaufort chapter and sat as vice president in 1973.

The Congressional Gold Medal is the nation’s highest civilian honor awarded to persons who have performed achievements that have had an impact on American history that is likely to be recognized as a major achievement in the recipient’s field.

The late Master Sgt. Jackson served in the U.S. Army prior to joining the Marine Corps. He served in WWII, the Korean War and Vietnam. A native of Long Island, N.Y., he died on July 18, 1987 and is interred at Beaufort National Cemetery.

A buffet luncheon will follow the award presentation at Helena Place Senior Living, 1624 Paris Ave., Port Royal, SC. The public is invited to attend this awards ceremony and reception. Call 843-252-3001 or rewing@enlivant.com.

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