Across South Carolina

Plea deal could end for Ravenel's dealer


COLUMBIA --- The man who admitted he sold cocaine to former state Treasurer Thomas Ravenel might have jeopardized his plea deal with prosecutors after he was charged with striking a police officer last month, authorities said.

Mount Pleasant police arrested Michael L. Miller three days after his Nov. 13 plea deal to a drug charge after he got in a confrontation with police outside a restaurant and struck an officer, U.S. Attorney spokesman Kevin McDonald said.

Mr. Miller didn't tell federal authorities about the arrest, violating a condition of his $25,000 secured bail until sentencing and a term of his plea deal, Mr. McDonald said.

Republican sponsors school choice bill

COLUMBIA --- A Republican legislator who opposed a public school choice proposal last year says he will sponsor a similar measure this time.

Ted Pitts believes his bill can gain enough support to pass the Legislature and override a possible veto. Mr. Pitts says his bill will not force districts to accept students from other districts, which he said was a major problem with last year's proposal.

He says that would have cost taxpayers in high-performing districts tens of millions of dollars to educate students from other districts.

Special election fills House District 94 seat

SUMMERVILLE --- A former state lawmaker has been elected to a South Carolina House seat that was vacated when the legislator became treasurer.

Heyward Hutson ran unopposed in Tuesday's special election for House District 94 in Dorchester County. The seat had been held by Converse Chellis. He was elected treasurer by lawmakers after Thomas Ravenel resigned after a federal drug indictment.

Mr. Hutson is a Republican who served two terms in the House during the early 1990s.

2 judges nominated for state's top court

COLUMBIA --- Two judges on South Carolina's second-highest court have been nominated for a seat coming open next year on the state Supreme Court.

The Judicial Merit Selection Commission on Tuesday selected Chief Court of Appeals Judge Kaye Hearn of Conway; Court of Appeals Judge John Kittredge of Greenville; and Circuit Judge John Few of Greenville.

Lawmakers will choose among the three next year to fill a seat being left open by Justice James Moore of Greenwood, who by law must retire.

Judge Few lost to then-Court of Appeals Judge Donald Beatty of Spartanburg for an open Supreme Court seat earlier this year.

-- Edited from wire reports