AJ Dancers Fly at Tuesday’s Home Game.

Fast spinning and leaping dancers from the Andrew Jackson Dance groups made a colorful appearance at Tuesday night’s games against North Central. Their brief routine drew loud praise from the crowds that attended the game. Andrew Jackson Middle and High School have highly skilled and entertaining dance groups.


Lady Vols score 51 more points in win over Lady Warriors

Advancing towards to the Class AA playoff, the Andrew Jackson Lady Vols scored a 51 point victory in their matchup the Indian Land Lady Warriors 71-20.  The Indian Land Boys game was fought to the end, with the Warriors surging in the final minutes to a 55-48 victory over the Volunteers.


A lack of Lady Warriors defense, and a strong Lady Vols defense lead to the victory. The Lady Vols repeatedly slowed down and used their plays and teammates effectively. The Lady Warriors turned over the ball 21 times to just 16 for the Lady Vols.

The first quarter was a clear sign of things to come with the Lady Vols taking all the points in those 8 minutes, 16-0. The second quarter saw the Lady Vols on fire with their highest quarter total of 21 points to Lady Warriors 8 points. Score at the half was 37 to 8. The third quarter saw the continued dominance of the Lady Vols with a score of 52-15. The final score was 71 to 20.


Danielle Ussery led the Lady Vols with 5 three-point goals and 4 for 4 free throws for 19 points. Raegan Brewer scored 17 points for the team win.  Makaylen Crosby dropped in 11 points. Mackenzie Marshall had 7 points. Osha Black had 6 points. Caroline Wren added 5 points. Iesha Williams had 4 points. Madie Catoe added 2 points

“Our defense created our offense. That is our go to. When we pass the ball, and get everyone involved, that is just a bonus to us.” Said ShaRon Robinson, Coach of the Lady Vols.

Kristin Falk led the Lady Warriors with 5 field goals and 1 of 2 free throws for 11 points. Chelsi Mackey dropped in 4 points for the team. Allison Floyd and Crystal Strother both added 2 points. Payton Lieser added 1 point.

“We struggled from beginning to end. Silly fouls and lack of defense.” Said Lady Warriors coach Natasha Rogers.


AJ scored a 7-point lead at the end of the first quarter, 13-6. The Warriors outscored the Vols by 11 in the second quarter to bring the halftime score of 26-22. AJ surged back in the third quarter to take the lead with a score of 38-34.


Just minutes into the 4th quarter, the Vols were ahead by 2 points 40 to 38. The final 6 minutes saw the score seesaw back and forth. With 3 minutes left, OJ White dropped in a free throw to give AJ a six-point lead, 48-42. Indian Land surged back with a trey, two layups and 4 free throws to advance to 55-48 at the end of the game.

Joey Walter led the Vols with a field goal, 2 treys and 6 of 6 free throws for a total of 14 points. Jalen Robinson and OJ White each dropped in 8 points. Shieme Ricks and Griffin Gardner each added 5 points. Darrien Wright and Morgan Truesdale had 4 points.

“We fought, but we just have to get control down the stretch. We are missing key shots and key free throws. To win the game, you have to do the little things and not turn the ball over when it counts.” Said Danny Wright coach of the Vols.

Destin Clark and Tai Gilbert each scored 16 points to lead the Warrior’s efforts. Jerrick Palmer dropped in 9 points. Tre Thompson had 8 points. Douglas Tutt added 5 points. Donovan White added 1 point.

“It is a rival game, it does not matter what the record is, we are going to go toe to toe. We came out victorious tonight. It was a good game for the seniors.” Said Nate Smith coach for the Warriors.

Indian Land travels to Columbia on Friday to play the Capitals. Andrew Jackson is on the road Friday to play in a regional game against Chesterfield.

Human Trafficking Task Force releases 2017 Report

Increased public awareness and professional training in human trafficking are hallmark achievements of the 2017 South Carolina Human Trafficking Task Force.  The Task Force is made up of a variety of Federal, state and local agencies. Its’ efforts are to help reduce and eliminate human trafficking in South Carolina.


“January is National Human Trafficking Awareness Month,” Attorney General Wilson said. “There is no better way to kick off a new year than by looking at the progress we’ve made, but also focusing on our goals for the upcoming year. The more we learn about the scope of human trafficking in South Carolina, the better equipped we are to attack it. I am proud of the Task Force and their continued work to eradicate this crime in our state.”

In 2017 there were 59 charges across the state of SC for Human Trafficking. 22 of those charges involved trafficking of minors. 18 cases were closed (7 of which involved minors).  Three pled guilty (all three involved minors). Over all 50% of cases were dismissed, 33% were cleared by transfer to Federal prosecution, and 13% cleared by plea deals.

The Task Force is working to implement a 2014 State Plan to address Human Trafficking, which addresses points such as Data about Human Trafficking, Funding and resources, and coordination between agencies. In reflection on progress, the professional training and public awareness were listed as achieved, and ongoing. Areas that are in progress, include data collection and analysis, increased residential services. Efforts to have a juvenile human trafficking court are on hols and have not progressed.


Part of the challenge appears to being able to learn as much as possible about the extent of human trafficking, and have that coded into each agencies responses so it can be collected. Many different agencies makes using common definitions and data collection can be quite a challenge.  Add into the lack of specifically trained law enforcement, judges, prosecutors, counselors, and services providers, and it is easy for victims to be misidentified. For example, is the minor a runaway, or a prostitute, or a victim of human trafficking? Once a victim is identified as being human trafficked, what resources are available specific to their needs.

77% of human trafficked victims are female and 15% are males, and 25-26% % are minors. About 70% are adults. Human trafficking is difficult to track and define as there are approximately 100,000 new escort ads every day, many featuring children. The Task Force is making progress and will continue into 2018 with meetings on the first Friday of March, June, September and December. Meetings are held in the West Columbia Complex from 10am to 12pm.

Information drawn from http://www.scag.gov/archives/29357

Lady Vols in Tie for First Place in Region

The Andrew Jackson Lady Vols continued their drive towards the playoffs with another win. They battled the Cheraw Lady Braves at home on Friday night to a 44-38. The AJ boys fought hard but came up 10 points short in their battle with the Braves 67-57.


Danielle Ussery tries for a layup and is blocked by Callie Bryant (1)


The Lady Vols took charge with a 2-point lead in the first quarter 11-9. In the runup to the half, the Lady Vols chalked up 5 extra points to post a 7-point lead at the half 23-16.  The lead dropped to 4 as Callie Bryant of the Lady Braves found the quarter’s trey to help outscore the Lady Vols by 3 points. Third Quarter score was 32-28 in Lady Vols favor. The final score was 44-38.


Caroline Wrenn snags a rebound


4 field goals, 1 trey and hitting 7 of 10 free throws put Danielle Ussery in the lead scorer spot for the Lady Vols. Makaylen Crosby was a close second with 15 points. Raegan Brewer dropped in 8 points. Iesha Williams added 3 points.

AJ has 13 team fouls and 17 turnovers. Cheraw had 22 Team fouls and 14 turnovers.

“Great win, we are locked back in to first place in a tie with Cheraw for the region.” Said ShaRon Robinson coach of the Lady Vols. She also talked about the need for the Lady Vols to capitalize on free throws and not making rush turnovers when coming out after halftime.

Callie Bryant paced the Lady Braves with 15 points.

The struggles of the young AJ Vols continued. They trailed the Cheraw Braves throughout the Friday game. They were 2 points behind at the end of the first quarter 19-17. The Vols stayed within striking distance through the half with just 5 points separating the teams 28-23. The points gap was 7 at the end of three quarters 45-37. The final score was 67-57.


Jamie Hinson makes a quick layup


Jamie Hinson hit 3 field goals, 4 treys and 2 of 4 free throws to lead the Vols with 20 points. Joey Walters hit 18 points for the team. Jalen Robinson found 12 points, and OJ White had 7 points. AJ had 14 team fouls and 9 turnovers. Cheraw had 16 team fouls and 14 turnovers.


Jalen Robinson goes up for 2 of his 12 points


“Inexperience as a varsity team, I am proud of them as a team. When we pressed the ball we did pretty good. We just have to do the little things. We missed a lot of layups, and a lot of free throws. We will have to keep shooting and practicing and get better.” Said Danny Williams coach of the Vols.

Marshal Myers paced the Braves with 32 points.

AJ will host Indian Land on Tuesday.

LCSO post Scam Alert on Facebook Page.

“Scam Alert:
The Lancaster County Sheriff’s Office would like you to be aware that the IRS, Publishers Clearing House and a Dish Network Scam is going around. Here is what you need to know. Publishers Clearing House and the IRS will not call you on the phone. With the Dish Network Scam, either they will tell you that you owe money on a past bill or try to get you to upgrade your service. The easiest way to avoid most phone scams is simple. Don’t do business over the phone when someone calls you. Don’t use a number that the caller provides to verify the legitimacy of the caller. Sheriff Faile doesn’t want any of our citizens to fall prey to these scams, so please be mindful and report scams to the Lancaster County Sheriff’s Office.”

LCSO Facebook

A Ray of Sunshine

Railey Hegler, Little Miss Lancaster 2017,  brought a Ray of Sunshine to Palmetto Citizens Against Sexual Assault today and presented the counseling office with a collection of stuffed animals. The animals will be given to children who come to the center for interviews or when they start counseling. A simple stuffed animal can be one of the first kind things a child receives as they speak out about abuse.

2018-01-25 17.16.01

Railey had a few minutes to chat with Charlene McGriff, the Center’s Executive Director.

It is through meaningful efforts to care for others, that children learn to embrace those who have needs. Who benefited from this act of Railey’s? Everyone. The children who will receive the stuffed animals, The center who can see that the community cares, Railey, as she learns the joy of giving and helping. The county benefits as well as there can never be darkness as long as there is a ray of sunshine.

Facebook page for Railey Hegler

Possible Lawsuit related to County Losses incurred in the Opioid Crisis.

Mitch and Mandy Norrell present to County Council on Monday a possible lawsuit that could help the county recover some of the losses related to the opioid overdose crisis. There is a national push to sue the opioid manufacturers for costs involved in coping with the crisis.  There would be no cost to the county, the fee agreement would include a 25% of judgment clause. There is a precedent when South Carolina reached a deal related to Tobacco manufacture. The States are also planning suits against the opioid producers. The suits that are being discussed with the Norrells would be by the communities and municipalities, not the state, so the judgment award would be coming back to the community.

They presents some facts related to the overdose crisis. In 2014 overdose deaths surpassed death from automobile accidents. In 2012 101.8 prescriptions were written per 100 people. That is more prescriptions that people in the state. Overdose deaths have increased 118% between 2013 and 2014. Addiction to opioids can happen in just one prescription.

In South Carolina in 2015, 5702 patients were discharged from emergency rooms with issues related to opiate abuse/dependance

There has been a 67% increase in the number of attempts to reverse opioid overdose by EMS in South Carolina in the period between 2013 and 2016.   3847 in 2013, 4187 in 2014,  4610 in 2015,  6427 in 2016.

Information was sent to the County Attorney for the council to review. The information was presented to the council to review.