Across South Carolina

Former executive might be released


LEXINGTON - A judge will rule Monday on whether to release a former mortgage company executive while he appeals his convictions on securities fraud.

Ronald Sheppard was sentenced earlier this month to 20 years in prison for his role in defrauding investors in one of the state's largest bankruptcies.

Mr. Sheppard led HomeGold Financial, which collapsed in 2003 along with its subsidiary, Carolina Investors. More than 8,000 investors lost about $275 million dollars.

Mr. Sheppard, who faced a maximum of 25 years in prison, could be eligible for parole in 2012.

Politician's son will plead guilty to felony

CHARLESTON - The son of former Georgia Lt. Gov. Mark Taylor will plead guilty to felony drunken driving in a crash that killed his best friend, the son's attorney confirmed.

Fulton Fletcher Taylor, 23, was driving his sport utility vehicle on Interstate 26 in August 2005 when it hit a retaining wall on an onramp and flipped, throwing his friend from the vehicle, authorities have said.

Mr. Taylor is charged with felony driving under the influence resulting in death, which carries a punishment of one year to 25 years in prison, assistant prosecutor Nathan Williams said.

A plea hearing had been scheduled for next week.

Woman charged in assault of ex-husband

UNION - A woman has been arrested after Union County deputies say she poured kerosene on her ex-husband and set him on fire.

Magnolia Sims, 51, of Whitmire, was charged Friday with assault and battery with intent to kill, Sheriff Howard Wells said.

Ms. Sims told deputies she wanted her ex-husband, Leroy Hill, to die, Sheriff Wells said.

Mr. Hill, 56, and Ms. Sims' brother, 32-year-old Thomas Chick, were both burned in the incident and taken to the Joseph M. Still Burn Center at Doctor's Hospital in Augusta. Mr. Chick was injured trying to help Mr. Hill, Sheriff Wells said.

Mr. Hill, a former sheriff's deputy, told deputies that his ex-wife had poured kerosene on him and the bed he was in and set it on fire.

DHEC grants permit for debated landfill

COLUMBIA - The state Department of Health and Environmental Control granted a permit for a controversial landfill in Rock Hill, despite the fact that York County currently has a 60-day moratorium on landfills in place.

DHEC spokesman Thom Berry said the agency granted the Vernsdale landfill its permit because in a recent ruling, Judge John Hayes said "DHEC and DHEC alone has the duty of determining the granting or denial of a landfill permit."

- Edited from wire reports