Pitts Approves Selection of New SCDC Director

   Governor Nikki Haley yesterday named Bryan P. Stirling as the acting director of the South Carolina Department of Corrections (SCDC), effective October 1st. Current director, William R. Byars Jr. announced his retirement in August after having served as the head of the SCDC for three years. Bryan Stirling has been Governor Haley’s Chief of Staff since October of 2012 and served as South Carolina’s Deputy Attorney General from 2006 to 2012.

  “Over the past three years our prison population has decreased and the recidivism rate is now at a 20 year low – proving that our reforms are working,” said Gov. Nikki Haley. “When it came time to think of someone for the Department of Corrections, I wanted someone I knew I could work well with, someone that knows how I feel about our prison system, and someone that I trusted. That person is Bryan Stirling and I am both proud and confident in his ability to continue the great work Judge Byars has established.”

  The appointment gets a good review locally. “I approve of the governor’s appointment,” said Representative Mike Pitts. “I’ve worked closely on law enforcement issues with Bryan while he was at the Attorney General’s office and during his time at the governor’s office.”

  Other support comes from Senator Mike Fair, who said “Bryan is an excellent choice to lead the DOC…His experience at the Attorney General’s Office and time spent working with law enforcement will be a tremendous asset for the department. Bryan’s reputation is impeccable and he has consistently served with distinction.”

  Alan Wilson said “As Deputy Attorney General, I frequently relied on Bryan Stirling’s expertise and counsel. He not only gained my utmost trust, but his leadership skills earned him the respect of his colleagues in the Attorney General’s Office.  I know Bryan will display that same leadership and ability as he moves on to the next phase of his career.”  

  Bryan Stirling will be transitioning over the next several weeks and officially begin his duties as director beginning October 1, 2013.

Clinton Morning Rush Traffic Blocked Again, Personal Injury this Morning


One person was medivaced from Downtown Clinton after being struck by a train around 7:30 this morning. The train stopped, blocking rush hour traffic on West Carolina and North Broad Streets.

Blake Davis New CPW Finance Director

 A new Finance Director has been announced for the Laurens Commission of Public works. The CPW yesterday announced the appointment of Blake Davis to the position of Finance Director. Blake is a graduate of Newberry College and the South Carolina Banker’s School. He is currently serving as an Ambassador for the Laurens County Chamber of Commerce and he is a graduate of Leadership Laurens County. Mr. Davis is also serving on the Senior Options board. Prior to this appointment, Blake spent the last seven years with the Palmetto Bank. Of the appointment, Laurens CPW General Manager Dale Satterfield said “We are very excited to have Blake on board at the CPW. I know he will do a fine job.”

Power Tool Theft

  Laurens County Deputy Jimmy Johnson was dispatched to a residence on Little North Carolina Road near the Newberry County line at 4:14 yesterday afternoon on a report of two power tools being stolen since July 22nd. A pressure washer had reportedly been pawned in Laurens and a chain saw was pawned in Spartanburg. Value of the stolen equipment was $400.

Top Ten Little Known Talents Of Jabori Cooke

By Jan



# 10. He is a world class yoddler, but that is just not what Laurens Idol was looking for.


# 9. It takes talent to break 4 moving violations in less than 300 yards, Jabori can do it !


# 8. Jabori’s facebook page is full of maps where he has been, this proves his talent to know just where he is but not how he got there, unless he is at the Laurens Airport.


# 7. If you want a surprise meal, order something, send Jabori after it and you can bet it won’t be what you ordered. Example: order chicken fried rice and he will bring you shrimp chow mein.


# 6. Jabori is so ticklish until you can just point your finger at him and he breaks moves you’ve never seen before because he thinks you are going to tickle him.


# 5. Jabori has this knack for having a wreck and not getting charged for it.


# 4. You got a favorite place to park your car ? Jabori will make sure to get to work earlier than you so he can get your place. He has this beautiful smile with his whitened teeth he will flash when you ask him why he did it.


# 3. Jabori loves to get onto Randy’s snack cakes, his talent, he can eat a 24 pack in one morning.


# 2. No one, and I mean no one, can deliver the Mattress Warehouse commercial like Jabori. He even claims you can get rid of warts and such by sleeping on a great mattress.


# 1. Tour Guide: If you want to see Joanna, S.C., let Jabori take you. You will get to see scenic Charlotte,N.C. and maybe downtown Atlanta Ga., Go through Greenwood,S.C., and you might finally end up in Joanna, that is if he has his gps with him.

Men Charged with Stealing Jet Ski


   Four men who were arrested by DNR Officers at 3:15 Monday morning on watercraft violations have been additionally charged with stealing a Jet Ski from the Waterloo area on Sunday.  18-year-old Justin Ray Marler of 444 Burton Creekside Road, Waterloo and 18-year-old Dennis Jacob Trent of 290 Flotella Road Extension, Waterloo, along with 17-year-old Christopher Adam Barber and 17-year-old Charles Anthony Barber, both of 1916 Dillard Road, Waterloo were issued citations charging them with reckless operation of a personal watercraft, violation of a wake zone, Operating personal watercraft after hours and with failure to stop for a blue light. Yesterday, the Laurens County Sheriff’s Office served warrants charging each of the four with Grand Larceny.  Sheriff’s Lt. Bryant Cheek alleges that on June 30th each of these four men took a Jet Ski valued at $7,500 from 217 Given Road, Waterloo. Each of the four young men remained in the Johnson Detention Center earlier today, pending arraignment on the Grand Larceny charge.

No Action on Dress Code

   There was still no action was taken by the School District 55 Trustees last night regarding the proposed new dress code for Middle Schools. Superintendent Billy Strickland promised that the matter is still being looked into, but reported a very poor response to surveys sent out to parents. He also said that all dress codes already in place will be strictly enforced.

Two of Three Charged

  Two women have now been charged in connection with an alleged incident of attempting to get extra money for scrap metal by concealing someone in the car that was carrying the scrap metal during the weigh-in Tuesday. 44-year-old Shirley Deanne Burns of 1 Cody Lane, Fountain Inn reportedly stayed behind and was the first arrested. The other female suspect, 18-year-old Rebecca Lynn Kautz of 4 Cody Lane, Fountain Inn, later turned herself in. Both have now been charged with Obtaining Money under False Pretense. A male of late teens or early 20’s was still being sought in connection with the incident. Ms. Burns and Ms. Kautz were being held earlier today pending arraignment on the charge.

Man Charged with Two Assaults in April

 The Laurens County Sheriff’s Office yesterday arrested a Joanna man on multiple charges in connection with alleged crimes against a girlfriend on two days last month.

22-year-old Dashua Terrell “Dash” Reeder, booked listing an address at 402 West Calhoun Street, Joanna is charged with 2nd Degree Burglary, Two counts of Criminal Domestic Violence, Malicious Damage and with Unlawful Use of a Telephone.

  From alleged activities on April 15th, Deputy Bollman alleges that Dash Reeder committed a domestic assault on the victim at their address on West Calhoun Street.  Reeder is also accused of 2nd Degree Burglary for allegedly entering the West Calhoun Street residence without consent and with intent to commit a crime therein. He is further charged with Malicious Damage for allegedly doing $2,500 in damage by breaking out three windows, cracking the windshield and causing dents in the right rear door of the victim’s vehicle at 402 West Calhoun Street, Joanna on April 15th

 From alleged activities on April 27th, Deputy Carter charges Dash Reeder with Criminal Domestic Violence for allegedly following the victim’s vehicle and coming at her in an aggressive manner and also allegedly threatening her. An Unlawful Use of Telephone charge states that on April 27th he allegedly used profane, obscene, vulgar and/or indecent language repeatedly for the purpose of annoying/harassing the victim and her family.

  Cash or Surety Bonds on the charges included $25,000 on the Burglary, $5,000 on the Malicious Damage, $2,179 on each of the Domestic Violence charges and $1,092 on the Unlawful Use of Telephone case. Dashua Terrell Reeder remained in the Johnson Detention Center this morning with bonds over $35,000.

1st Degree Harassment

   The Sheriff’s Office yesterday charged a man with harassing a woman last month. 56-year-old Arthur Clyde Clark Jr. of 1208 Warrior Creek Church Road, Gray Court was charged with Harassment 1st Degree. Sheriff’s Investigator Ben Blackmon alleges that between April 1st and 15th of this year the defendant harassed a woman by maintaining surveillance and unwanted contact with her. Arthur Clark was released on $3,000 personal recognizance bond.