Originally created 01/22/06

Across South Carolina



Neighbor is charged in teenager's slaying

GREENVILLE - A 13-year-old Greenville boy was found stabbed to death near his home.

Authorities have charged the boy's neighbor, 20-year-old Maurice Dwayne Ashmore, with murder and possession of weapon during a violent crime in connection with the death of Raul Torres.

Mr. Ashmore was taken to Greenville Memorial Hospital with injuries that were not considered life threatening, said Master Deputy Chris Taylor of the Greenville County Sheriff's Office.

Master Deputy Taylor says Raul's body was found by students getting off a school bus Friday afternoon.

Appeal means tribal record suit continues

ROCK HILL - A group of Catawba Indian members will have to wait for requested financial documents after a lawyer for the tribe filed an appeal.

"The Supreme Court is going to have to hear this," said tribal attorney Jay Bender. "I think if the plaintiffs are entitled to an accounting, then the court can make that determination."

Last month, Master-in-equity Judge Jack Kimball ordered the documents to be made available to tribal members within 30 days.

Five tribal members sued in October 2004 looking for tribal financial information.

Attorney J.D. Mosteller of Barnwell says the suit asked for records about three major items: $45 million of a $50 million land-claim settlement in 1993; several federal grants the tribe received; and revenue from the Catawba Bingo operation in Rock Hill.

Deadbeat dad' faces more legal troubles

COLUMBIA - The man called the "ultimate deadbeat dad" accused of faking his death 27 years ago to avoid child-support payments could have more problems on his hands.

Johnny Sterling Martin was hit with a $31,000 bill or 18 months in jail at a hearing Friday. But authorities say they are investigating a $20,000 claim for child support against Mr. Martin in Alabama.

At the Lexington County hearing, Mr. Martin's first wife, Gayle Prince, told a judge that he left in 1979 after an order to pay $4,000 for his two children, then ages 6 and 9.

Soon after, Mr. Martin escaped from a Lexington County jail. Then Family Court received a phone call saying Mr. Martin had died in a bar fight in Alabama.

Mr. Martin's attorney, Wayne Floyd, said he would ask Family Court Judge Richard Chewning to reconsider his ruling.

Mr. Floyd said that Mr. Martin thought the child support had been taken care of and that Mr. Martin did not report his own death. However, at the time of Mr. Martin's arrest, Lexington County Sheriff James Metts said the man confessed to faking his death.

- Edited from wire reports