EDITOR'S NOTE: Charges in this case were dropped after a judge ruled there was no probable cause to proceed to trial. http://chronicle.augusta.com/latest-news/2011-02-17/sex-charges-dropped-against-north-augusta-man
Heath Russell Wetherington, 28, of the 200 block of Altamaha Drive, was arrested by South Carolina Law Enforcement Division officers on Thursday on a charge of first-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor.
The incidents occurred between Oct. 3 and Dec. 16 and the girl was injured by the sexual battery, according to SLED spokeswoman Jennifer Timmons.
North Augusta Public Safety requested SLED investigate because Wetherington is the nephew of former Chief T. Lee Wetherington.
Judge Donna Williamson denied bond, saying she was not authorized to set bond for a charge that could carry a life sentence. Though Wetherington wasn’t released, the judge told him he wasn’t allowed near the family’s home, employment or school or day-care center. He also isn’t allowed to contact the victim’s family or have anyone contact them on his behalf.
Wetherington didn’t have an attorney present but said he had secured representation.
His next court date is set for Nov. 5.