Loved ones' lives hang in the balance with coroners, sheriffs


I have been pondering several things that have surfaced during the recent postings and utterances surrounding the coroner's race in Clarendon County.

First of all, some of the comments were downright embarrassing. I think the reason, not verified, that Manning Live closed its comments section following several articles was because of the "spewed ludicrous" comments offered by aliases. Just my opinion; everyone has an opinion.

All of the misrepresentations of facts that have swirled over the last couple of weeks have been hurtful; hence the hearings before the Third Judicial Circuit Court.

On June 11, 2012, the governor of South Carolina affixed his signature to a bill passed by the 119th South Carolina General Assembly 2011-2012, making SC Code of Laws 17-5-130 the law governing coroners' qualifications in the state of South Carolina. This law has been tested two times in the S.C. judicial system since its passage - Georgetown and Sumter counties.

The defendants in both cases did not meet the qualifications to serve as a coroner in South Carolina, based on SC Code of Law 17 5 130. Is it a perfect law? No law is perfect, especially when it affects my quest.

Assumptions are very dangerous in this world, especially when it comes to leading and governing. I learned that tradition is just as perilous as assumptions. Such was the case that led our electorate to making their decision.

We, as the electorate, generally do not investigate laws before making decisions. Most of us are familiar with the traffic laws because we see the large speed limit signs daily when driving.

Several of the SC Code of Laws are applicable to the coroners' election and qualifications. In Clarendon County's situation, SC Code of Law 17-5-130 is tantamount to serving as coroner in South Carolina, in which our county is number 14 of 46 counties in the state.

Saint Louis University School of Medicine offers continuing education courses for persons currently employed in a position such as funeral director, coroner, death investigator, law enforcement or another medicolegal field. "These courses are training courses, not certification courses or degree courses. We offer continuing education certificates for those wanting to turn in the credits to their professional board to maintain certification." The course being offered August 2018 and January 2019 in Saint Louis, Missouri, is not a certification course, according to their website. Additionally, "Please note we are not affiliated with the American Board of Medicolegal Death Investigators (ABMDI), Saint Louis University staff will not answer questions on their behalf. Please contact the ABMDI regarding requirements exam and fees."

It is important to understand how the legal and educational systems work with so many wraparounds to obtain qualifications for highly skilled jobs (including coroners and sheriffs in South Carolina.) Neither of these positions can afford to have walk-backs. Why? People and loved ones' lives are hanging in a balance during their encounters with either of these elected positions.