Homes for Hope Coming to Laurens

      Look for Homes of Hope in Laurens soon. City Council this week unanimously approved a resolution which will authorize the organization, Homes of Hope, to build four energy-efficient homes in the Jersey area of the city, for low to medium income families.

        Before the vote there was a public hearing for the resolution, and although no one came forward, Councilwoman Marian Miller voiced her appreciation for the building of the homes that will be in her district.

     She said “There is a need in district one for this type of housing, I  know that there is a waiting list for section eight housing, I am sure they will go over well and I am very delighted to see them come to my district.”

     City Councilman Johnnie Bolt said “This will help the community with its tax base and reduce unsightly neglected empty lots.”

Three Years for Trafficking Cocaine in 2010

    A Cocaine Trafficking case was handled yesterday in Laurens County General Sessions Criminal Court. 27-year-old Frankie Layne Simpson “Boot” of 1603 Gary Street, Clinton pled to Trafficking Cocaine back on March 29th, 2010. He was sentenced to three years in the South Carolina Department of Corrections. Frankie L. Simpson remained in the Johnson Detention Center this morning, pending transfer to the State Prison system.

Car Wash Used to Dump Meth Waste

  The Sheriff’s Office responded to 1212 North Harper Street, Laurens at 9:42 yesterday morning on a Meth Waste site. Deputy Jeremy McMahan met with a man who said he and his brother operate the car was at that site and that while his brother was cleaning the trash cans at the car wash yesterday morning he found what appeared to be materials used in the manufacture of methamphetamine. Lt. Shelton used special equipment to go through the bags and he reportedly found several items used in meth manufacture. There were Sudafed capsules, bottles of pill wash, bottles with some sort of white residue, lithium batteries and butane fluid. The items were photographed and properly disposed of. Information was placed under investigation.

Financial Fraud Alleged

    Laurens County Detention Center records this morning note that 21-year-old Nicholas Kiriakis “Nick” Franks of 274 Georgia Street, Gray Court was arrested Wednesday on Fraud charges from just over a year ago. Nick Franks was charged with Financial Identity Theft. Lt. Jawarski Shelton states that on March 13, 2013 Franks did unlawfully and maliciously use personal financial information on the victim without his permission to obtain financial resources. Nick Franks was released on a $5,000 personal recognizance bond.

Driving Stolen Car with Suspended License

   The Sheriff’s Office yesterdayarrested 32-year-old Charles Mike Utsey of 8 Gavin Place, Taylors on charges of DUS and Receiving Stolen Goods. Lt. Marlon Higgenbotham alleges that on April 17th Charles Mike Utsey operated a motor vehicle while his privilege to drive was under suspension, and that he had in his possession a 2004 Chevrolet Equinox belonging to a victim of theft that was valued at $9,000. The officer states that Utsey knew or had reason to know that the vehicle was stolen. Charles Mike Utsey was being held in the Johnson Detention Center, pending a bond hearing.

Drug Use Alleged in Child Neglect Case

 A Waterloo mother was arrested yesterday on child neglect charges related to drug use. The Sheriff’s Office booked 28-year-old Sarabeth Simpson of 94 Catfish Cove Road, Waterloo on a charge of Child Neglect. A warrant alleged that on March 21, 2014 she placed at unreasonable risk of harm her minor child in that she tested positive for cocaine and opiates. It states she  had custody of and just gave birth to a child. Sarabeth Simpson was being held in the Johnson Detention Center overnight, pending a bond hearing.

An Illegal Invitation to Visit Alleged

   The Sheriff’s Office yesterday arrested a woman for allegedly inviting someone with a restraining order to visit her while she was in safekeeping.   27-year-old Felicia Lee Zellner of 131 Acorn Trail, Fountain Inn was charged with Violation of a Court Order of Protection. Deputy Yarbrough states that on April 1st 2014 the defendant violated an order of protection issued by a Laurens County Family Court Judge in that she invited a subject to the Safe Home where she was temporarily residing. She was being held in the Johnson Detention Center overnight, pending a bond hearing today.

Everyone, Lock Your Car!

    Laurens City Police were dispatched to a salon in the 400 range of Church Street twice yesterday afternoon on separate reports of theft from vehicles at the location. Lt. Heath Copeland was dispatched at 12:36 pm when a woman from further up Church Street reported she was getting her hair done and left her purse inside her car. When she returned to the car she discovered her .32 caliber pistol was missing from her purse. It was valued at $400. Sgt. Ryan Bolding was dispatched to the same location at 3pm yesterday, when a Gray Court woman said she was getting her hair done at the location and walked to her car to find that her pink cell phone case was missing. She said she’s also missing a case that contained her driver’s license, Medicaid card, EBT card and $35 cash. Officer Ryan Bolding then advised everyone in the salon to lock their vehicle if they had not already.

Two Probation Violations Charges

   South Carolina Probation and Parole arrested 23-year-old Amanda Nicole Gambrell of 479 Rocky Springs Church Road, Laurens on Wednesday. She has now been charged with two counts, Violation of Probation. Both cases involve charges for Shoplifting 3rd or greater offense. Bonds were set totaling $50,000 on the charges yesterday. Amanda Nicole Gambrell remained in the Johnson Detention Center this morning.

Probation Violation Alleged

   South Carolina Probation and Parole yesterday arrested a Clinton man for allegedly violating terms of his probationary release. 27-year-old Frantario Antori Crooks of Westchase Apartments, Clinton was served with a warrant charging Violation of Probation. It alleges he failed to pay towards financial obligations and being in arrears, of failing to report, of testing positive for marijuana and of keeping his whereabouts unknown to his agent. Frantario Crooks was being held in the Johnson Detention Center overnight, pending arraignment.