Wesley Lewis

Wesley Lewis

Charged with child pornography

Police checkpoints planned

Officers with the Conway Police Department will be conducting public safety checkpoints in December.

These checkpoints are put in place to deter driving under the influence and aggressive driving. They also help officers make sure drivers have valid licenses and liability insurance.

The safety checkpoints will be conducted on different dates, times and locations throughout the month of December.

Loris man dies in vehicle accident

A single-vehicle collision that occurred Monday morning on Waccamaw Boulevard resulted in the death of 21-year-old Justice Jordan of Loris.

The S.C. Highway Patrol is the investigating agency.

Attempted murder

Witnesses told police that a woman used a butcher knife to attack a teenage girl who was fighting with her daughter at about noon Friday on Hemingway Street, according to a Conway police report.

The report says the suspect swung the knife at the girl’s head causing a severe laceration. Pictures were taken of the girl’s injury before emergency medical workers took her to Conway Medical Center.

The investigation led to Bertha Mae Sims being identified as the suspect, and, as of yesterday, she was wanted by the Conway Police Department for attempted murder, according to information provided by the city.

Anyone with information on her whereabouts is asked to contact the Conway Police Department at (843) 248-1790 or call 911.

Fugitive nabbed

Conway police were called to TD Bank on Third Avenue at just before 8 a.m. on a recent morning to check on a suspicious person who was walking around the parking lot while employees were opening the bank, according to a Conway police report. He was reported to have been wearing a black hoodie, blue jeans and red vest.

When the policeman arrived, he found a different man talking with a policeman. That man told the policeman he was there to sell a bicycle to the man in the red vest.

Police found the red vested man at the bus station and while checking on him found that he was wanted for fraud in Pennsylvania.

He was taken to jail and the bicycle he had just purchased was taken to the city’s evidence shed. He was issued a warrant for being a fugitive from justice.

Two times too many

When a Conway policeman went to the Conway Chinese restaurant to check on a man lying behind the business at about 11:30 a.m. on a recent morning, he found that two officers had talked with the man only one hour earlier when they told him he was trespassing and he needed to leave, according to a Conway police report.

The responding officer says because the man had already been trespassed from the property and was back, he charged him with trespassing and took him to jail.

Florence man charged

A Conway policeman stopped a young Florence man at about 7 p.m. on a recent night because he was in the area of an armed robbery that had happened minutes earlier about two blocks away at the Carolina Pay Day Loans, according to a Conway police report.

In the back seat of the car, the policeman reported seeing a ski mask and black shoes similar to those worn by the suspect.

Police also found a gun in a glove compartment. A background check showed that the man is forbidden to possess a firearm by state and federal regulations.

He was charged with possession of a firearm by certain persons.

He was released from jail on a $10,000 bond.

At Carolina Pay Day Loans, a Conway police report says, a man came into the business with a gun and demanded money. An employee handed over the money and the man left. The Florence man has no charges connected to the armed robbery, according to Conway city records.

Condemned property

A Conway policeman making a property check on a condemned house at 1911 Racepath Ave. noticed a chair standing below a back window, and the window was open, according to a Conway police report.

The policeman called for anyone inside to come out.

A few minutes later, a Conway man came out of a side door onto a screened porch where the policeman handcuffed him. He charged him with trespassing and taken to jail.

Sleeping at the pump

A Conway policeman on routine patrol was sent to check on a vehicle parked crooked near a gas pump at Murphy’s on Church Street, according to a Conway police report.

An employee told the policeman that the man appeared to be sleeping and had been there for about an hour at 2:30 a.m. Friday, the police report says.

The policeman reported that the man was sleeping with coins in his hands.

The policeman says he shone his light into the vehicle and knocked on the window several times before the man woke up.

The police report says the man was slow and lethargic and was slurring his speech.

The policeman says he could smell alcohol on the man’s breath and his eyes were red and glassy.

When the suspect stepped out of the vehicle, he was unsteady on his feet.

The policeman says in a search he found that the man had several Schedule IV pills in his pocket with a large amount of cash. The policeman also found a Jimenez Arms Gun, but it was clear on a national crime computer, and the sleeping man is not prohibited from having a gun.

He was charged with public drunkenness and taken to jail. The pills were identified as Clonazepam, a Benzodiazepine Schedule IV drug. The 24 pills were put into an evident locker, along with the suspect’s $2,073.

A city judge issued a warrant for possession of a controlled substance in Schedule I-V.

Horry County man charged with child pornography

Wesley Shane Lewis, 26, of Galivants Ferry, is facing one charge connected to the sexual exploitation of a minor, according to information provided by the S.C. Attorney General’s Office.

Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force investigators with the Horry County Sheriff's Office made the arrest. Investigators with the Attorney General's Office, also a member of the state's ICAC Task Force, assisted with this investigation.

Investigators received a CyberTipline report from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) that led them to Lewis. Investigators say Lewis distributed child pornography.

Lewis was taken to jail Nov. 27. He is charged with one count of sexual exploitation of a minor, second degree (§16-15-405), a felony offense punishable by up to 10 years imprisonment.

The case will be prosecuted by the Attorney General's Office.

Attorney General Alan Wilson stressed all defendants are presumed innocent unless and until they are proven guilty in a court of law.

Trotting to TNT

An Horry County policeman says he was called to TNT Auto on U.S. 501 one day this past week to deal with a horse in the road.

The person who called police said he had been following the horse along the median of U.S. 501 from the area of Martin Lane, according to an Horry County police report.

The policeman called for someone to come help, but before the helper arrived, the woman who owns the horse came and claimed ownership of the horse, saying it had gotten out of the place where she keeps it.

The owner called for someone with a trailer to come get her horse.

Another officer told the responding officer that he had warned the woman several times about keeping her horses contained and that he has an open case against her.

She was given a ticket for livestock public nuisance running at large.

She was stunned

When a 14-year-old girl went through the security machines at her school at North Myrtle Beach High School on a recent morning, school officials found a handheld stun gun in her backpack, according to an Horry County police report.

The girl told police that her mom bought her the stun gun to use for self-defense earlier in the year. She said she had the gun in her backpack when she, her mom and a friend were at the mall and she just forgot that it was in there.

Police called the student’s mom, but she couldn’t come to the school because she was sick.

The girl was charged with carrying a weapon on school property, and the gun was confiscated.

Guns stolen

An Aynor man told Horry County police that while he was at the Wildlife Action Shooting Range on Gunter’s Island Road, someone took two handguns out of his vehicle, according to an Horry County police report.

He told police he left the handguns in his vehicle while he was shooting long guns. When he went back to his truck, the guns were gone.

Needs gas?

After hearing her dogs bark, a resident of Oak Log Lake Road in the Conway section told police she went to investigate and found that someone had tried to get into her gas tank using a pry device, according to an Horry County police report.

Someone there told Horry County police that this wasn’t their first trouble. They said they had to replace all of their tires and the brother of a former friend kept driving along their road honking his horn.

Suspicious, but not arson

Horry County police were called to Grand Strand Pick and Pull on U.S. 501 in the Conway section to check on a suspicious fire, according to an Horry County police report.

A Conway fireman told the policeman that he didn’t see the fire because it was out when he got there.

Someone there told police that one of the employees put the fire out using three fire extinguishers.

A witness told police that a customer told him that the vehicle was smoking.

The person who put the fire out told the policeman that he found the fire extinguishers inside the vehicle, but he never saw flames.

A fire investigator was summoned. The Horry County police report says the investigator was able to find a fuel pump that had been removed from a vehicle two cars away.

The policeman classified the fire as suspicious because the fuel pump was not in the car it had been taken from.

The policeman says although the fire is suspicious, it is not consistent with arson.

Another suspicious fire

When a man returned to the Catholic Church of St. James on Academy Drive in Conway to set an alarm at shortly before 2 a.m. on a recent morning, he found a trashcan on fire in the gathering hall, according to an Horry County police report.

The report says the man’s quick action of moving the trashcan out of the building kept the building from burning. When the police report was written, no one had any idea how the fire might have started or who might have been responsible.

The report says no one was inside the building when the fire started.

The fire was determined to be suspicious because it was in a place of worship, and police planned to notify the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms agency.

Weapon at school

Horry County police were called to Loris Middle School where a student had brought a knife to school, according to an Horry County police report.

The young boy told police that as he emptied his pockets to pass through the metal detectors, he found the knife in his pocket.

A school official told police that she watched the video and it confirmed the boy’s explanation of what happened. The knife was seized and kept for safekeeping, and his parents were contacted. School officials did not want to press charges, but told police they would handle the discipline.

Sexual assault

A Loris woman told Horry County police that she went to a Conway area house to buy weed because she has a stomach disorder and the weed keeps her from being nauseous, according to an Horry County police report.

She says a man there went into his room while she sat on the couch.

When he came out he had a gun, and before sexually assaulting her told her that if she told anybody he’d kill her and go after her family.

Alcohol/drug incident

■ A Conway man locked himself in the men’s room at Wendy’s in Conway at about 2 a.m. on a recent morning.

The Conway police report says a policeman went there and talked with the man inside a stall. He says the man’s speech as slow and slurred, and he smelled of alcohol. The policeman charged him with public drunkenness. The police report also says that the man had an open bottle of vodka in a backpack.

He was also charged with public drunkenness, and was taken to jail.

Mad mom

The mom of a Waccamaw Elementary School student, angry because her child was being bullied, left a message on the school’s phone saying that she was tired of the bullying, and if it happened again she’d get on the school bus and smack the little girl who was causing it.

The Conway police report says they don’t know who the girl she was complaining about is.

The police report says the woman had gotten onto the school bus once before and yelled at a student.

A Conway policeman talked with the woman and warned her not to get on the bus again.

School administrators told the woman that they had called police again. The report says she got upset and started yelling, saying she didn’t threaten anyone and she was scared she was going to jail because the police had been called a second time.

A policeman says he tried to calm her down, but she was very upset.

The school didn’t want to press charges, but a police officer went to the woman’s house where she listened to the phone message. The report says she told the policeman that she didn’t remember saying those words and that she was “really heated at that moment,” and that she was would never hit another child and would never get on another school bus.

Police documented the incident for the school.

The policeman suggested that the woman call school administrators to talk about the issues she is having with her children and not for her to get on a school bus again.

The woman said she has no intention of talking to any more students on the bus.

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I'm the editor of the Horry Independent, a weekly newspaper in Conway, South Carolina. I cover city hall and courts, among many other subjects. Know of a good story? Call me at 843-488-7241.

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