Latest South Carolina news, sports, business and entertainment at 3:20 a.m. EDT

June 15, 2018 - 12:00 am

SC GOVERNOR

Warren gets backing from Templeton, Bryant in SC gov race

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Greenville businessman John Warren is getting a major boost in his quest to unseat Gov. Henry McMaster in the Republican campaign for governor.

Warren's campaign tells The Associated Press he's getting endorsements Thursday from Lt. Gov. Kevin Bryant and former public health chief Catherine Templeton.

Though McMaster led Tuesday's GOP primary, he only managed to secure 42 percent of the vote. Warren, Templeton and Bryant received a combined 56 percent. Warren finished second and the endorsement of his former rivals could be enough to push him over the top.

McMaster and Warren will debate next week in Newberry and face voters in a June 26 runoff. The winner will face Democratic Rep. James Smith and American Party candidate Martin Barry in November.

DEPUTY-SHOOTING-SOUTH CAROLINA

3 S. Carolina officers cleared in shooting of man with knife

GREENVILLE, S.C. (AP) — A prosecutor says three officers were justified shooting a mentally disturbed man armed with a knife in his South Carolina backyard.

The family of 35-year-old Jermaine Massey says Greenville County deputies should have reacted less violently since Massey called 911 himself reporting he was bipolar and feared he might harm his family.

But Solicitor Walt Wilkins said at a Thursday news conference that officers feared for their safety when Massey lunged at one of them with the knife on March 19. He showed body camera footage of Massey not reacting to Taser shocks.

Wilkins says three officers fired 11 shots total.

Interim Sheriff Johnny Mack Brown says he is working to get training on dealing with people having a mental health crisis to as many deputes as possible after the shooting.

GAS STATION SHOOTING

Police: Gas station clerk shoots customer after argument

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Authorities say a gas station clerk shot a customer in South Carolina after they argued about whether he was charged too much.

Columbia Police said the customer went behind the counter Saturday demanding his money back as he argued with 20-year-old Antar Daralhaj at the Obama gas station in Columbia.

Investigators say Daralhaj shot the customer as he was leaving the store. The man survived.

Police said in a news release that Daralhaj is charged with assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature and a weapons charge.

He remained in jail and it wasn't known if he had a lawyer.

HOTEL CALL CENTER

Hotel call center in South Carolina closing later this year

(Information from: The Post and Courier, http://www.postandcourier.com)

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — A call center that handles reservations for a number of hotels in closing in South Carolina later this year, eliminating more than 600 jobs.

InterContinental Hotels Group spokesman Neil Hirsh told The Post and Courier of Charleston on Thursday the center will close in November because of staffing challenges.

Hirsch said the North Charleston center has suffered high turnover and it's affecting the job performance of the 630 employees.

The company plans to have a third-party service provider handle the thousands of calls the center receives daily.

The reservations center had opened in 1997 with 200 employees.

InterContinental Hotels Group is a British company that owns or manages about 5,400 hotels with nearly 800,000 rooms around the world. The brands include Holiday Inn, Crowne Plaza and Candlewood Suites.

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DEPUTIES HURT-SEARCH

Suspect captured after 2 deputies hurt in South Carolina

HAMPTON, S.C. (AP) — Police have captured a suspect after two sheriff's deputies were hurt in South Carolina.

State Law Enforcement Division spokesman Thom Berry said 51-year-old Jay John Ruth was caught around 8:30 a.m. Thursday in Colleton County. Berry said Ruth is being returned to Hampton County, where two deputies were injured Wednesday night.

Berry did not have details on the arrest.

Police say Ruth fled a traffic stop and hit one deputy's vehicle and struck another deputy on foot. A Varnville police officer fired at Ruth but apparently did not hit him as he left the scene.

Berry said Ruth had been wanted in Hampton County on kidnapping and grand larceny charges.

Berry said the deputies have been treated and released from hospitals in Charleston and Hampton counties.

FORMER GUARD CHARGED

Ex-county jail guard now held in same South Carolina jail

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A former guard at a county jail in South Carolina is now being held in the same jail after being charged with misconduct.

The State Law Enforcement Division said in a news release that 24-year-old Tramina Shada McLaurin has been charged with public official misconduct in office and domestic violence.

SLED says McLaurin worked as a guard at the Marlboro County jail in Bennettsville and had a relationship with an inmate starting last October. She is also charged with cutting the father of two of her children April 12.

SLED says she's now being held in the Marlboro County jail. It was not known if she has an attorney yet.

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