July 2, 2022

Sheriff, ex-deputy billed with violent crimes: SC officers

The Marlboro County sheriff and a previous deputy in his section were being billed with several crimes, South Carolina Attorney Standard Alan Wilson explained Tuesday.

Marlboro County Sheriff Charles Lemon and former Deputy David Andrew Cook had been both equally charged with assault and battery of a higher and aggravated nature and misconduct in business, the Legal professional General’s Office stated in a information launch.

Due to the fact of the indictments, South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster suspended Lemon and appointed an interim sheriff.

On May perhaps 3, 2020, Lemon ordered then-deputy Cook dinner to use his taser on Jarrel Lee Johnson at the Marlboro County Detention Middle and unlawfully ongoing to activate the taser at minimum two moments just after the preliminary taser deployment to subdue the suspect whilst within the jail, in accordance to an indictment.

An preliminary report from the sheriff’s business explained Johnson was not injured, in accordance to WBTW. But the indictment stated Cook dinner deployed his taser into Johnson’s upper body and leg, and the assault was probable to deliver wonderful bodily personal injury or loss of life.

Johnson, who survived that incident, was on the floor crawling absent from the officers, Legal professional General’s Workplace spokesman Robert Kittle told The Point out.

Marlboro County court docket information show expenses of assault and battery of a significant and aggravated mother nature and assault on a law enforcement officer even though resisting arrest are nonetheless pending versus Johnson. They are currently being prosecuted by the community solicitor, Kittle explained.

Just after suspending Lemon, McMaster appointed previous Bennettsville Main of Police Larry McNeil to serve as interim sheriff.

McNeil, 68, served as the Bennettsville law enforcement chief from 2000-16 and most a short while ago served as the S.C. Department of Social Expert services director of employee protection and regulation enforcement liaison, keeping that place right up until 2021, the Governor’s Office environment stated.

McNeil will keep on being sheriff “until Lemon is acquitted, convicted, the indictment is in any other case disposed of, or until a sheriff is elected and qualifies in the up coming basic election,” the Governor’s Business explained.

Lemon has been the Marlboro County sheriff due to the fact 2017, after serving 12 several years as the main deputy. Prior to that, Lemon was the law enforcement main in Society Hill, South Carolina, for 4 several years.

Cook is no longer utilized in regulation enforcement, according to the Legal professional General’s Place of work.

If convicted on the felony assault and battery of a higher and aggravated mother nature demand, the two Lemon and Cook experience a optimum punishment of 20 several years in prison, in accordance to South Carolina legislation. A conviction on the misdemeanor typical legislation misconduct in office charge could indicate a maximum sentence of 10 many years at the rear of bars, the Legal professional General’s Business stated.

Three Marlboro County investigators resigned from the sheriff’s workplace last week, WPDE described. Info about why the investigators resigned was not accessible.

In accordance to WPDE, 1 investigator posted on social media about the resignation, indicating, “Today was my very last day sporting this badge. These days I selected my character around corruption. Right now I chose my integrity about my money. Currently I selected to stroll away. I tried to stand up to a traditionally oppressive and systemically racist institution and tried using to be a transform and attempted to make a alter.”

In 2018, a gun was stolen from Lemon’s patrol motor vehicle even though he stayed right away at the Columbia Embassy Suites resort for a instruction seminar, The State beforehand reported.

Lemon instructed The Condition his auto was locked and the gun was hid. The weapon was returned to the sheriff, and a Rock Hill resident was billed in the crime.

This is a establishing story, check back again for updates.


This is a breaking information story

In a breaking news condition, specifics can be unclear and the problem might nevertheless be creating. The Condition is seeking to get vital information and facts to the community as immediately and correctly as achievable. This story will be up-to-date as more information and facts becomes obtainable, and some details in this tale could change as the points develop into clearer. Refresh this web page later on for far more current facts.

This tale was at first released December 14, 2021 12:34 PM.

Noah Feit is a Actual Time reporter with The State concentrated on breaking information, public basic safety and trending news. The award-winning journalist has labored for many newspapers considering that commencing his job in 1999.
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