News In Brief - October 3, 2007

Student had pellet gun at school, authorities say

FORT MILL -- A 13-year-old boy was charged with disturbing school Tuesday after authorities say he brought a pellet gun to Gold Hill Middle School.

Authorities found the plastic gun in the boy's possession, said Capt. Allen Brandon of the York County Sheriff's Office. The gun wasn't fired on the campus.

Second teenager accuses instructor of exposure

A second girl has accused a former Ohio State Highway Patrol trooper turned driving instructor of exposing himself during a driving class, according to a Fort Mill police report.

The 15-year-old Tega Cay girl told police that David Wayne Zitcovich, 59, of 1458 Covenant Place, Rock Hill, exposed himself during a driving lesson in late July.

Zitcovich had not been arrested in the case late Tuesday.

Zitcovich, who provides private driving lessons in Rock Hill, was released from jail last week on an indecent exposure charge after police say he showed his genitals to another 16-year-old student during a driving lesson.

Arts council announces Art After Hours

The Arts Council of York County will use a grant from the South Carolina Arts Commission to create a new Art After Hours program geared to participants ages 25 to 40.

The program will provide art and programming that reflects the group's interests in a casual atmosphere. Membership, $50 per couple or $35 for an individual, includes invitations to Acoustic Café's and parties that include music, drinks and artist talks.

The first event will be the Downtown Blues Festival to be held Thursday through Saturday. Members of new program will receive a wristband good for all three nights if the membership is paid by 5 p.m. today.

Upcoming events include the kick-off party Nov. 1 at the Center for Arts featuring Rick Spreitzer and the first "Art Frenzy," an event where 5-inch-by-7-inch original art will be sold for $75. A May event is scheduled at a downtown photography studio.

For information, call the Arts Council at 328-2787 or e-mail arts@yorkcountyarts.org.

New county offices to be named for supervisor

CHESTER -- The new home of many Chester County offices will be named for County Supervisor Carlisle Roddey.

On Monday night, the County Council unanimously decided to name the 29,580-square-foot-building the Carlisle Roddey Chester County Governmental Complex.

The county bought the building last week from Omnova Solutions. The facility will house numerous county offices, including the council chambers and Roddey's office.

The facility, which was once a school, sits on about 71 1/2 acres and contains about 60 offices and 122 parking spaces.

The move likely will begin by the middle of next month. Leaders hope the council will have its first meeting in the building later this year.

Roddey held the supervisor's post for 24 years, from the mid-1970s through the late 1990s, before he was elected again in November.

Chester escapee still on the run

CHESTER -- Police are still looking for a Chester man who escaped police custody Monday night, said Chester Police Chief Mike Brown.

Brown said Wayne Alexander Caldwell, 29, of Chester was arrested in connection to drug and gun charges Monday but escaped police custody before he was transported to jail. Brown said Caldwell is not dangerous to the public.

"We know who he is, and we'll find him," Brown said.

Chester County authorities did find a man who had lost his way in the woods near the Broad River Monday evening, authorities said. The man was unharmed, officials said.

Motorcycle safety offered at York Tech

Those interested in learning about motorcycle safety soon will be able to take a class about it, thanks to a partnership between York Technical College and Cox's Harley-Davidson.

Participants will learn basic motorcycle riding techniques and will learn about suggested safety gear and protective measures.

To apply for the course, you must be eligible for a motorcycle driver's license and be able to ride a bicycle.

Motorcycles will be provided for use during the class.

Each four-day course is $325, and the course time is divided between the driving range at York Technical College and the classroom at Cox's Harley-Davidson. Classes are limited to 12 students.

The course will be offered Oct. 26 to 29 and Nov. 9 to 12.

To learn more, call 327-8029.

Path to South Pointe High opens after delay

A pathway for students to safely walk along Neely Road to South Pointe High School opened Monday.

The sidewalk, which runs between Crawford and Rawlsville roads was supposed to be open for the first day of school, but necessary state permits held up construction.

The opening of the path, dubbed South Pointe Trail, was uneventful, said Phil Leazer, transportation manager with the York County engineering department.

"We met with property owners, and everyone seems happy with it," Leazer said.

The trail was created in response to concern about students walking along the narrow shoulder of Neely Road to get to South Pointe, which opened in 2005.

Bus service is not provided to students who live within 1.5 miles of their school.

Meeting to address zoning for Winthrop

An informational meeting will be held Oct. 10 for residents interested in learning about Winthrop University's transition to the new city zoning category "planned educational district."

The new zone was designed to more accurately reflect the different things the university uses land for.

The meeting will be held from 5:30 until 7 p.m. in Tillman Auditorium.

City and university officials will be available to answer questions and hear comments after a PowerPoint presentation.

The rezoning process includes reviewing the university's existing development plans, holding a public hearing, and votes by the planning commission and City Council.

Neighboring property owners will be informed of the plans by mail.

University officials hope the process is finished in January.

Catawba/Wateree advisory group to meet

This quarter's meeting of the Catawba/Wateree River Basin Advisory Commission will be Friday in Rock Hill.

The meeting is scheduled for 10 a.m. in the Baxter Hood Center at York Technical College and is open to the public.

The agenda includes a summary of North Carolina's new Interbasin Transfer legislation and South Carolina's surface water withdrawal proposed legislation. A water management group update and drought discussion also are planned.

There will be an opportunity for public comment during the meeting, according to a press release issued Tuesday.

The commission provides guidance and makes recommendations to local, state and federal entities about the use of this river basin and surrounding natural resources.

S.C. student who shot himself gets probation

COLUMBIA -- A former star high school athlete who accidentally shot himself in the leg during class at Myrtle Beach High pleaded guilty Tuesday and was sentenced to probation.

Damien Julius Singleton, 18, pleaded guilty to carrying a weapon on school property on March 29 and possession of a firearm by a minor. A small-caliber pistol accidentally fired from his book bag during science class.

The bullet struck his right leg and the senior was hospitalized for more than a week with a shattered leg, his attorney Tommy Brittain said.

Singleton faced up to 10 years in prison. Instead, Singleton must perform 500 hours of community service and has a curfew for the next six months. He also is not allowed within 500 yards of Myrtle Beach High, where he once shined in both basketball and football.

Singleton's attorney said the former student brought the gun to school for protection against a man who threatened to kill him.

The teenager's attorney said he thought pleas from Myrtle Beach Mayor John Rhodes and city councilman Mike Chestnut, Singleton's cousin, swayed Judge James Barber from sending the teen to prison.