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Rock Hill Criminal Defense Law Blog

Teacher needs DUI defense after allegedly knocking down officer

When a resident of South Carolina is accused of driving while impaired, the consequences of a conviction can be devastating. Moreover, if the accused person holds a responsible position in the community, even DUI accusations without a conviction can have a life-changing impact. It is not uncommon for the court of public opinion to find a person guilty of drunk driving before the accused individual has even had the opportunity to present a defense in a court of law.

A geometry teacher at a high school in North Charleston is likely experiencing such prejudice after her recent arrest on a DUI charge. Court records indicate that the 24-year-old teacher was traveling on Interstate 26 when she allegedly knocked down a 32-year-old police officer who was making a traffic stop. The officer was hospitalized for treatment of serious injuries.

7 indicted on fraud charges in South Carolina

In South Carolina -- as in other states -- there are some requirements for minority participation in publicly funded projects. However, there have been several cases in recent years in which construction company owners were prosecuted for taking advantage of opportunities to enrich themselves by using minority businesses as fronts. Federal prosecutors recently indicted a group of people in the construction industry in South Carolina on allegations of this type of fraud.

It is alleged that the group of seven executives and associates set up bogus minority and disadvantaged companies which they operated with the intention of winning government contracts. It is also claimed that the government contracts the group secured since 2002 brought them about $350 million in state money. Furthermore, it is alleged that further fraud was committed when the group solicited existing minority companies owned by women, veterans and others to assist in their fraudulent endeavors.

Mother accused of DUI driving with kids in car

Driving while intoxicated can have serious consequences. When a South Carolina driver is suspected of drunk driving while there are children in the vehicle, the potential penalties can be even more severe. A woman from Greenwood will likely be seeking the support of a criminal defense attorney after her recent arrest on DUI charges.

An accident report indicates that the woman crashed her car into a curb on a Greenwood street on a recent Sunday. A police officer who saw the wreck reportedly stopped to check on the woman. He says she appeared to be unsteady and smelled of alcohol. The police also reported that there were two young children in the car.

Magistrate's office employee pleads guilty to embezzlement

White collar crimes do not necessarily involve large amounts of money. In a case in which a South Carolina woman recently pleaded guilty to embezzlement of public funds, the amount of money involved was no more than $2,300. Of this figure, a portion was recovered -- leaving the woman with $1,395 to pay in restitution.

The 45-year-old was an employee of a magistrate's office since 2003, during which time she reportedly mostly dealt with traffic fines. She pleaded guilty to altering court documents from June 2014 through March 2015 to direct funds to herself for personal use. The investigation followed a request by the sheriff's office and the chief magistrate of Oconee County.

Carolina woman convicted of health care fraud

Following a prior conviction of 12 people in connection with fraudulent Medicaid claims, three more were recently convicted in a federal court. One of them is a 48-year-old Charlotte resident who prosecutors reported to be the leader of the conspiracy that involved $10 million in health care fraud. The others were two 38-year-old individuals -- both from South Carolina -- one was convicted, and one pleaded guilty to health care fraud conspiracy.

Court documents indicate that the scheme was carried out from October 2012 through August 2013. Prosecutors say the lead conspirator directed her accomplices to create documents to support fake claims to be filed with Medicaid. The claims were for mental health diagnoses, treatment plans, and therapy services -- none of which were carried out. The personal information of Medicaid recipients was fraudulently used, leading to additional charges of identity theft.

Drug charges filed after search and seizure at York County home

One South Carolina man was recently arrested, and authorities are looking for a second resident of a home at which a search warrant was recently executed. Both men are said to have been convicted on drug charges before. The house search was carried out while drug enforcement officers went searching for the second man in connection with an outstanding arrest warrant.

The York County Multijurisdictional Drug Enforcement Unit reportedly arrived at the residence with a search warrant and found only the 24-year-old Rock Hill man present with no sign of the other man for whom they were searching. During the search, authorities say they discovered marijuana, methamphetamine and a meth lab. After seizing the drugs, a HazMat team was called to handle the disposal of it.

Woman faces DUI charges after allegedly causing musician's death

The consequences of a conviction on charges related to driving while impaired can be serious. If an accident was caused in which there was a loss of lives, the impact would be even more severe. A woman from Myrtle Beach who is facing multiple charges is likely focused on preparing a defense to the DUI charges and other accusations she faces.

South Carolina Highway Patrol reported that the 45-year-old driver of a pickup truck allegedly turned the wrong way into a road in Beaufort, traveling against the flow of traffic. This apparently happened shortly after midnight on a recent Sunday morning. The pickup truck smashed head-on into a sedan that was occupied by a 24-year-old musician who was traveling home after a performance.

Traffic stop leads to arrest of 2 wanted on drug charges

Shortly after midnight on a recent Sunday morning, South Carolina troopers noticed a car driving erratically on U.S. 17 toward Georgetown. They followed the car and pulled the driver over -- not realizing that the occupants were wanted on drug charges. The driver allegedly said he did not have his driver's license with him; he provided a name but said he could not remember his Social Security number. He was asked to exit the car, and troopers claim they could smell alcohol on him. Officers also said they noticed the passenger trying to hide something, but he refused to answer their questions and managed to flee the scene.

The police department was asked to locate that man while troopers continued searching the driver and the car. They claim to have found his driver's license which indicated that he had earlier provided a false name, and their search apparently also yielded liquor in two cups in the car. Police located the passenger and upon his return to the scene, he allegedly provided three false names. However, upon arrival at the police station, he was identified and found in possession of 7.3 grams of marijuana.

Why is it important to fight a first DUI charge?

If a South Carolina driver is suspected of driving while intoxicated, the potential consequences are significant. A conviction could result in fines, jail and the suspension of one's driver's license. It is not uncommon for people who are arrested on DUI charges to be unsure of what to expect and what steps to take without jeopardizing the case.

Time behind bars is compulsory after a conviction for a second offense. Also, the driver's license will be revoked for one year. After that period, an interlock device must to be installed before the person can drive again. Along with these penalties a DUI conviction may adversely affect various facets of the person's life, including scholarships, employment opportunities, car insurance premiums and more.

South Carolina man faces 11 child pornography charges

When South Carolina residents are accused of crimes, they may feel trapped by circumstances. If the alleged crimes involve child pornography charges, the outlook may be bleak. Prosecutors may not like to negotiate deals on these types of charges, and a conviction may lead to time behind bars and registration as a sex offender. Even if the charges are dropped or the jury acquits, the humiliation often remains.

A West Columbia man is facing 11 charges for sex crimes. His arrest followed an investigation by the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. It is alleged that the accused man distributed child pornography through a network on which such files are shared.

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