Tag: Horry County Police Department

Countering Gang Activity in Horry County

The Horry County Public Safety Committee heard a report on gang activity within the county from Lynn Baker, HCPD’s gang intelligence specialist.

According to Baker’s report, at least nine of the 19 murders in the county area last year were gang related and gangs are the cause of many of the 88 shooting and more than 1,000 shots fired calls HCPD responded to.

Baker said a number of gangs are already operating in Horry County and they pose a danger to our neighborhoods.

But, it takes more than just police monitoring and response to counter the growth of gangs in the county. Since she was first hired in 2013, Baker has been telling groups throughout the county that gang activity can be countered by efforts within communities.

Public Safety Committee chairman Al Allen understands the need for a community wide effort to counter the growth of illegal gang activity. That is why Allen appointed a special sub-committee co-chaired by Horry County Council member Jimmy Washington and Horry County School Board member Holly Heniford to investigate means to counter violence in communities within the county.

The sub-committee held its organizational meeting last week and, in the coming months, will hold a series of community meetings throughout the county where it will solicit information from local citizens about problems they have with violence in their respective neighborhoods.

The desired end product from these meetings is a report that will provide a broad based blueprint for reducing violence within our communities. The blueprint will include not only police, but also community leaders, organizations and citizens who work together with local officials and agencies to counter the root causes of violence and lawlessness.

Horry County Council Considers Major Tax Increase

A major tax increase will be proposed at the Horry County Council budget workshop Wednesday May 27, 2015.

According to county sources familiar with the plan, taxes for the Horry County general fund budget will be proposed to increase up to 23% (8.25 mils added to the current 35.6 general fund millage).

In addition, an increase of 67% will be requested on the county road fee to bring it up to $50 per private vehicle.

The tax increase is being parsed as providing needed money for the Horry County Police Department, Sheriff’s office and Solicitor’s office with the preponderance of it going to HCPD.

But, it also includes an across the board pay increase for all county employees plus providing money for a proposed merit, incentive pay raise plan.

And it must be remembered, while the general fund tax increase will apply to all property holders in Horry County, those who live in the incorporated municipalities gain essentially no benefit from HCPD.

Taxing someone for services they don’t receive isn’t supposed to be included in conservative Republican lingo.

Just a few years ago, a tax increase of this size for the general fund budget would have never made it into Horry County Council budget discussions.

But, with one-third of the council having been replaced since 2012, the times they are a changing.

Changes Coming in Horry County Police Funding?

If Horry County budget discussions are any indication, it appears changes will be made in the way the Horry County Police Department is funded.

That appears to be the sentiment of a majority of council members after this week’s Horry County Council budget retreat.

The exact change is not certain at this time, but the establishment of a special tax district in the

Horry County Council and Police Funding

One of the most important items Horry County Council will study at its budget retreat next week is future funding for the Horry County Police Department.

Council chairman Mark Lazarus recently directed county staff to study the possibility of establishing a special purpose tax district for police funding, similar to the method in which the Horry County Fire Department is funded.

The results of that study are expected to be ready for the Horry County Council budget retreat.

Mark Lazarus on Paying for Police Services

During a council workshop Tuesday, Horry County Council chairman Mark Lazarus warned of a future tax increase to pay for increased needs for police services.

“As we continue to grow, the issues at public safety are going to continue to grow,” said Lazarus. “We’re going to need more personnel and it’s going to grow at a faster pace than our income is growing.”

Lazarus directed staff to study the possibility of establishing a special tax district in the unincorporated areas of the county to fund the police department similar to the way Horry County fire department personnel and equipment are currently funded.

Southern Holdings and Public Corruption

Public corruption cases are all the news in South Carolina lately and it’s time for the name Southern Holdings to be as scrutinized as Harrell, Metts or Pinson among others.

The Southern Holdings case stems from actions by the Horry County Sheriff’s Department and Horry County Police Department in June 2000 and August 2000, as well as subsequent events.

Southern Holdings, Inc. and several stockholders of this closely held corporation are plaintiffs in the case. Horry County, Horry County Police Department, Horry County Sheriff’s Department and various individuals are defendants in the case.

Any time you study an issue that evolves from the original Southern Holdings case, you get tangled in a web of lies, deceit and public corruption.

Gingrich, Myrtle Beach, Oil and Interstates

Horry County Nixes Reality Show

According to the latest information from inside Horry County Government, a reality show looking to film during a bike rally won’t become a reality in Horry County.

A production team from PSG Films, the group that films “Alaska State Troopers”, initially got approval to ride along with Horry County police during last week’s fall bike rally.

However, there was not enough time to sell sponsorships, so planning moved to the 2014 spring rally.

Then some Horry County officials not necessarily sympathetic to bike rallies heard about the plans. You know, ‘Take Back May’ and all that.

Horry Chair Special Election Runoff Hijinks

Republican challengers Mark Lazarus and Al Allen will square off Tuesday March 26th in a special election runoff for the party nomination for Horry County Council chairman.

The election will effectively decide the next council chairman as there is no Democratic candidate and a write-in campaign that could defeat the Republican nominee is not in the cards.

Lazarus led the first round voting with 41 percent of the vote to Allen’s 24.5 percent, which just squeaked out second place over first time candidate Debbie Harwell who finished with 24 percent

Southern Holdings HCPD Defendant Arrested

One of the main police defendants in the Southern Holdings case was arrested early Monday morning for criminal domestic violence and misconduct in office and fired from the Horry County Police Department hours after the incident.

Charles K. McLendon was arrested for actions taken against his estranged wife while on duty, in uniform using a Horry County Police Department vehicle.

McLendon demonstrated erratic, abusive and potentially lethal behavior during the incident, according to details of the arrest. His actions were not unlike those he demonstrated over 12 years ago during the Southern Holdings case.

Federal Tort Claims Lawsuit – Part IV

A federal tort claims lawsuit, with Horry County and former Horry County Police Department Chief Johnny Morgan included as defendants, is moving forward in Florence federal district court as discovery and depositions are scheduled later this month.

The suit stems from allegations of fraud on the court under color of law by HCPD officers, SLED agents and FBI agents, among others. The suit alleges personnel of these agencies conspired to withhold evidence, commit perjury and commit other unlawful acts in order to influence the outcome of a previous federal lawsuit, thereby violating the civil rights of the plaintiffs.

Part II of the series described actions by the Horry County police officers and Horry County Sheriff’s deputies that are alleged as illegal.