News In Brief - July 26, 2007

Officers find pot farm inside mobile home

LANDO -- A Chester County man was jailed Wednesday after authorities said he grew more than 100 marijuana plants in a doublewide mobile home.

David Honeycutt, 45, of 3491 Gaston Farm Road was charged with trafficking marijuana and possession of a firearm during a violent crime, said Detective Scott Thompson of the Chester County Sheriff's Office.

The plants, with a street value of nearly $300,000, were seized by officers.

Authorities said the trailer's surroundings were controlled to grow the marijuana plants.

"Each room had its own air-conditioner, humidifier and light source," Thompson said.

Honeycutt remained in custody Wednesday at Chester County Detention Center. If convicted, he could face 25 years in prison on the trafficking charge.

Fort Mill greenway section to open

FORT MILL -- The first section of a 31-mile greenway around the town of Fort Mill will open at 4 p.m. today. The Nation Ford Greenway will link the 2,300-acre Anne Springs Close Greenway with the Mecklenburg County greenway system at Sugar Creek, as well as the Tega Cay and the Rock Hill Parks system.

The dedication will be at the Nation Ford Greenway trail head at A.O. Jones Boulevard next to Nation Ford High School. After the dedication, Anne Springs Close will lead a hike of the two-mile trail; participants should dress accordingly.

-- The Charlotte Observer

S.C. man to stand trial on charges of killing mother

AIKEN -- A man who police said killed his mother then walked his daughter down the aisle at her wedding in Kentucky was found competent to stand trial.

During a brief court hearing Tuesday, prosecutor Barbara Morgan said court-ordered evaluations found 58-year-old Craig Baldwin knows the difference between right and wrong. A trial date for his murder charge has been set for Nov. 12.

Baldwin complained of short-term memory loss and has a history of mental illness, defense lawyers said at an earlier court appearance. But Tuesday, Baldwin's lawyers did not contest the findings of the mental evaluation.

Neighbors found the body of 83-year-old Dale Baldwin covered with a blanket in the bushes on her front lawn about a mile from downtown Aiken in June 2006.

School-choice leader to appeal ruling

LEXINGTON -- The leader of a group that supports tax credits for private and home schools said he will appeal a judge's ruling that he could not access a system his local school district uses to send messages to parents and others.

Randy Page sued Lexington School District 1 last year, saying school officials violated his free speech rights by not allowing him to post messages on the district's communication system.

The district was sending out e-mails and memos against a school choice bill that included tax credits for private and home schools, and Page said as a district taxpayer, he should be able to defend the bill on the same system.

Page is president of South Carolinians for Responsible Government, which supported the bill the group dubbed "Put Parents in Charge."