VIRUS OUTBREAK-SOUTH CAROLINA
SC gov directs officials to release virus cases by ZIP code
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster has directed the state health department to begin publicly disclosing confirmed COVID-19 cases by ZIP code, a level of information specificity the agency had said was not necessary in the outbreak. In a tweet, McMaster said the directive was effective Friday, noting that he also wanted heath officials to begin providing “the estimated number of residents who are likely infected and untested” in the same ZIP code. Also on Friday, Greenville City Council passed an ordinance allowing a $100 fine for open, essential businesses that don't take steps to provide social distancing in their stores.
Cleanup of US nuclear waste takes back seat as virus spreads
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The U.S. government’s efforts to clean up Cold War-era waste from nuclear research and bomb making at federal sites around the country has lumbered along for decades, often at a pace that watchdogs and other critics say threatens public health and the environment. Now, fallout from the global coronavirus pandemic is resulting in more challenges as the nation’s only underground repository for nuclear waste finished ramping down operations Wednesday to keep workers safe. Shipments to the desert outpost will be limited for the foreseeable future while national laboratories and defense sites around the country have shifted to only those operations considered “mission critical.”
SC House and Senate to come back for one day next week
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The South Carolina House and Senate plan to return for one day next week. Wednesday's session has a limited agenda of passing a resolution allowing state government to continue to spend money if a new budget isn't passed by July 1 and laying out what matters they can deal with after the regular session ends May 14. Both House and Senate leaders say members can spread out in the chamber and balconies. Senate Democrats don't like the plan and said senators should meet in smaller groups, maybe even by videoconferencing, then wait for the peak of the virus and meet all together.
CHURCH FIRE INVESTIGATION
Suspicious church fire under investigation in South Carolina
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Federal officials say they are investigating a suspicious church fire in South Carolina. Investigators say they are offering $5,000 for information on the March 19 blaze at Columbia’s Whaley Street United Methodist Church. No one was injured during the fire. Investigators say they have classified the fire as “incendiary.”
Police: Kentucky murder suspect in custody in South Carolina
CHESNEE, S.C. (AP) — Authorities in South Carolina said a Kentucky man accused of killing a missing woman was arrested after deputies found his abandoned car. Anthony Daryl Hall, of Hillsboro, Kentucky, was arrested Wednesday night in Chesnee, South Carolina. Spartanburg Sheriff’s deputies responded to a report of an abandoned car and found Hall. Authorities said Hall told deputies he didn't know where he was and that he had killed his girlfriend on March 27. Kentucky State Police said the woman, Jodi L. Stapleton, was reported missing on March 30. Stapleton was later found dead. Hall is charged with first-degree murder and evidence tampering.
SC prosecutors: Deputy took bribes to protect gamblers