Elgin Police Department (EPD) officers detained and charged two juvenile brothers, ages 15 and 16, after an officer caught them traveling at nearly 70 mph in a 35 mph zone on Main Street around 6:45 a.m. Sunday.
According to an EPD report, the responding officer pulled the car over on Bethel Campground Road and saw that the 16-year-old driver was not wearing his seatbelt. He also reported smelling the odor of marijuana coming from inside the car as the 16-year-old said that he left his driver’s license at home, which was “just down the road.”
After the officer had him exit the car and come over to the patrol car, the driver claimed he had only smoked some marijuana earlier and that there was nothing illegal in the car. He initially challenged the idea of having the car searched, but then admitted there was a pistol in the car and that he had handed it to his brother. He claimed to have bought the gun from a stranger two days earlier.
The officer called for assistance, including from the sheriff’s office. While waiting, the officer spoke further with the young man, who admitted that their mother did not know he was driving her car. After other officers arrived, the reporting officer spoke to the 15-year-old brother, who told them the .38 caliber semi-automatic pistol was under the front passenger seat. Dispatchers relayed the gun had been stolen out of Charleston County.
In the car, officers found a green backpack containing a number of drug-related items. Officers seized all the items. Around that time, the boys’ mother showed up and said she had no idea they had left in the car, which she said actually belonged to a 19-year-old son.
The boys are being petitioned to family court on charges of possession of a stolen pistol and possession of a pistol by a person under 18. The 16-year-old was further cited for speeding, beginners permit violation and a seatbelt violation. It was unclear at press time whether the brothers were also cited for the drug paraphernalia found with them.
The EPD also reported the following recent incidents:
An officer arrested a 30-year-old Elgin man and charged him with multiple violations following a traffic stop on White Pond Road around 8 a.m. Saturday. Another driver had called dispatch they were following the blue Toyota Camry because the driver appeared impaired. The witness later told police that the man crossed the center line on Sessions Road more than a dozen times as well off the side of the road into grassy areas. Prior to the stop, the officer clocked the man driving at 62 mph in a 30 mph zone and still crossing the center line. After turning on his blue lights, the officer had to follow the car until finally being able to stop it near Garlits Drive on White Pond Road. Although the driver did not have anything to drink, he failed the officer’s sobriety tests. He later admitted to having taken two doses of a sleep aid medication within a short amount of time that morning. The officer also found him in possession of a small amount of marijuana and a bag containing several drug-related items. The officer charged the man with DUI (drugs), simple possession of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia, driving under suspension, and speeding.
The driver of a truck belonging to a delivery company out of Georgia that is not authorized by the U.S. Department of Transportation to operate out of that state was caught on video surveillance striking a building on the 2500 block of Main Street on July 25 after reportedly making a produce delivery to a restaurant there. According to an EPD report, the video shows the truck had no license plate and that the driver drove off without reporting the damage. An officer managed to track down the company in Georgia and spoke to someone on Saturday who confirmed they have a truck matching the officer’s information and that they did make a delivery to the restaurant, but claimed not to have access to any other information.
After conferring with the Kershaw County office of the Department of Social Services, an officer called EMS to transport a 79-year-old man from a Strawberry Field Lane home to the hospital to be evaluated after a neighbor located him on a porch yelling for help. The officer found clothes and trash “everywhere” inside the residence and that the man could not take care of himself. After the man was transported to the hospital, the officer managed to contact the man’s 56-year-old daughter who said a caretaker was supposed to be with her father.
Just before 7 p.m. July 19, a couple living on Cherry Lane reported seeing a man in their backyard looking around at their trailer. When they went outside to confront the man, he reportedly hid his face, but claimed he was at the wrong house and left in a full-size dark gray pickup truck with medium tinted windows. The couple described the man as a white male with blonde hair, wearing a “very bright” yellow shirt. He may have been as tall as 5 feet 10 inches tall and in his 30s, but the victims were not sure.
An Elgin officer worked with Catawba County, N.C., deputies to recover a truck stolen from a work site in Hickory, N.C. An officer located the truck in front of the suspect’s father’s residence in Elgin. The man said his son had returned to Elgin a few days earlier with the truck, and that he -- the father -- was working with the truck owner to return it. The officer confirmed with Catawba County officials that the truck owner planned to pick up the truck from Elgin and was not going to press charges.
Elgin officers also dealt with recent incidents involving credit card fraud, driving under suspension, DUI, harassment/intimidation, illegal dumping, improper vehicle license, missing person, no proof of insurance, no registration, possession of drug paraphernalia, public disorderly conduct, runaway, shoplifting, simple assault, speeding, trespassing, uninsured vehicle, and vehicle accidents.
(EPD reports are provided under the S.C. Freedom of Information Act. Subjects are considered innocent until proven guilty.)