VIRUS OUTBREAK-SOUTH CAROLINA
SC mayor: Governor creating headaches with special waivers
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The mayor of South Carolina’s capital city says he's pursuing an open-records request so police officers know which businesses are allowed to remain open under Gov. Henry McMaster’s stay-at-home order during the coronavirus outbreak. Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin told The Associated Press on Friday that he was filing a Freedom of Information request for the records so officers know when a business is out of compliance with closure directives. Governor’s spokesman Brian Symmes said the Commerce Department was working to publish a listing of businesses granted exemptions “as soon as possible.”
SMALL PLANE CRASH
2 dead in small plane crash in coastal South Carolina
MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (AP) — Authorities say two people died as their plane crashed while trying to land at a small coastal airport in South Carolina. Federal officials say air traffic controllers lost contact with the two-seat Lightning LS-1 around 10:30 p.m. Thursday as it tried to land at Mount Pleasant Regional Airport. Authorities say the wreckage wasn't found until sunrise and the pilot and passenger were dead. Their names and where the plane took off from have not been released. Officials say the plane crashed in woods just past the airport’s fence about a quarter-mile from the runway.
FATAL DOMESTIC SHOOTING-BOND
Sheriff: SC man out on bond fatally shot wife, son, himself
ROCK HILL, S.C. (AP) — Authorities in South Carolina say a man fatally shot his wife, son and then himself while he was out on bond on domestic violence charges. York County Sheriff Kevin Tolson said Paul Patrick Johnson Sr. fatally shot his wife, the couple’s five-year-old son and then himself Wednesday. A December arrest warrant said Johnson was charged with domestic violence of a high and aggravated nature after he was accused of beating his wife. He was granted bond and told not to contact her, but two hours later he was seen on video at her home. His bond was revoked but later reinstated on Jan. 8.
SOUTH CAROLINA BUDGET
Economists estimate SC to lose $1B in revenue from COVID-19
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — State economists say South Carolina will only have about $700 million extra to spend next budget year. The estimate released Thursday is a steep decline from the nearly $2 billion February estimate of extra money to spend. The culprit for the decline is the coronavirus and economists say their projections have even more uncertainty than usual. The estimate was based on a 20% drop in the U.S. economy over three months of social isolating. If the isolation period lasts longer or the downturn is worse, the estimates will likely go down too. Lawmakers plan a September return to write a new budget.
FATAL POLICE SHOOTING
17-year-old killed by police in SC checking on car break ins
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Authorities in South Carolina say a 17-year-old male has been shot and killed by a police officer who wanted to talk to him about nearby car break-ins. Columbia Police say one of its officer was patrolling an area near Eau Clare High School on Wednesday evening when he saw Joshua Ruffin walking along a state highway. Investigators say Ruffin pulled out a gun as he ran from the officer and was shot in the front of his upper body. Investigators say a gun and a woman's purse was found near Ruffin. Authorities say they will release body camera footage when investigators allow.
Traveling minister accused of sexual misconduct with boys