A Laurens Shooting

The only way that DNR will intervene is in the event that the bear becomes hostile at which time they will move in to attempt to subdue and relocate the animal.

In case you missed it …. Black Bear In Laurens.




Monday, May 2, 2022

The  Laurens Police Department  is aware of a sighting of a black bear in the city according to LPD’s Facebook Page.  A Black Bear Was Spotted in Laurens Yesterday in the vicinity of Todd Avenue and West Main Street.

If seen please do NOT approach the animal, also do not try to capture, feed or otherwise have contact with the bear. Remember this is a wild animal and should be considered extremely dangerous if approached.

SCDNR has been made aware and have advised that the best course of action right now is to leave the animal alone in hopes that it will return to the wild and move on out of the city.

The only way that DNR will intervene is in the event that the bear becomes hostile at which time they will move in to attempt to subdue and relocate the animal.

The  Laurens Police Department asks that you not enter any areas or neighborhoods where you may hear the bear may be visiting to try to get a look or photograph as this could provoke or scare the animal and cause it to react.

Again the best course of action at time is to let him make his own way out of town.

However if you see that the bear is getting a little too close to your residence and/or shows signs of hostility please call 911 immediately.

The #LPD and #SCDNR thank you for your understanding and cooperation in this matter. - WLBG




Two men arrested after shots fired into vehicle and residence in Laurens.

Two men are under arrest after shots were fired into a residence and a vehicle in Laurens on Sunday night. Laurens Police Dept. officers were dispatched to First Street, near South Harper Street Ext., regarding shots being fired just before 9pm on Sunday night. Upon arrival, officers found an unoccupied white Chevrolet SUV in a ditch at the intersection of South Harper Ext. and First Street. After further investigation, three shots were discovered to have been fired into the rear window of the vehicle.

Officers began canvassing the area to locate the driver and any potential victims.

Officers were informed that a residence on the same corner had been shot into during the incident and a bullet entered the residence and was lodged in a bedroom wall where the owner of the home was sleeping. Fortunately, no one was injured in the residence. 

Witnesses said the incident began at the corner of First Street and Second Street when the individual in the SUV fired shots towards a group of people standing in the yard of a residence on Second Street. Officers were told that an individual standing in the yard fired back at the SUV. 

During the course of the investigation, officers learned that the driver of the SUV was Zikevious Rice, who was arrested and charged with attempted murder, possession of a weapon during a violent crime, discharding a firearm into a dwelling and discharding a firearm in the city limits. 

LPD officers also arrested Montrarius Dejon Bailey and charged him with attempted murder, possession of a weapon during a violent crime, possession of stolen property and discharging a firearm in the city limits. Bailey's firearm was recovered and found to have been stolen in 2020. 

Both were transported to the Johnson Detention Center and bond was denied on both attempted murder charges. 

"I am proud of the work our officers put in on this incident to bring it to a swift resolution," said Laurens Police Chief Chrissie Latimore. "I am also happy that our community came together to assist us in this investigation, showing that they too stand against these sorts of incidents. It is only through partnering with our community that we can resolve incidents such as this thoroughly and decisively. The Laurens Police Dept. hopes that this incident will send a message to our community that neither the LPD nor the citizens of Laurens will tolerate this sort of activity.” — golaurens.com


Laurens CPW Celebrated A Century Of Service

Tuesday, April 12, 2022

The Laurens Commission of Public Works celebrated a century of service last night (April 11). The commission’s 100 years of operation technically began on April 12th, 1922, when the three newly elected commissioners held their first meeting.

At the April, 2022 meeting last night, General Manager John Young presented some of the background for the establishment of the Commission of Public Works. The commission was designed to address mismanagement issues for the city’s public utilities. Young read a report from the Commission’s 1st manager. That report noted a 50% loss of electricity being delivered to the customers and reported on an unknown number of water customers who were not paying for their water. These included Laurens Mill.

Minutes from the May, 1922 CPW meeting noted 410 light customers and 511 water customers on record. The CPW manager that month reported 125 water meters, noting that 75% of them were “worthless.”

CPW Board Chair Parker Moore Jr. noted that all four systems of the CPW are now operating in good shape. He said the commission’s primary focus is now on continuing to provide the service Laurens needs for continued progress.

The Commission was presented a Resolution of the South Carolina Senate, introduced by Senator Danny Verdin, which congratulated on the 100 years of service to Laurens, noting the CPW’s role in the progress of the City of Laurens over the past 100 years. It also received approval from the State House. - WLBG


Ford Elementary School recently announced a new partnership with the Laurens 7-Eleven store.

7-Eleven presented Ford Elementary School with a $2,000 check on Monday to help support teaching and learning. The grant was given to enable teachers and students opportunities to improve the overall climate and learning environment. “We are extremely thankful that 7-Eleven chose our school to support in an effort to help build a stronger Laurens County,” said Ford Principal Zak Watson.

This new community partnership is an example of a local business partner investing in the future of the Laurens community.  - golaurens.com



Amid the hum of machinery Tuesday night (April 5), work at Frankische was interrupted when a gunman fired half a dozen shots in the plastic fabrication plant.

Minutes later, deputies who arrived found two people shot and the shooter had killed himself, Anderson County Coroner Greg Shore said.

Bruce Vandermosten Jr., 51, walked in through a side door at Frankische on AM Ellison Road in Williamston at about 10:30 and began shooting at employees, McBride said at a press conference Wednesday.

One of the victims died on Wednesday, McBride said. One woman was grazed by a bullet and drove herself to the hospital, he said.

Vandermosten was a former employee at the facility, the county coroner’s office said.

McBride said deputies were called at 10:34 p.m. for an active shooter situation at the plant. They did not use their weapons when they arrived. About 30 employees were in the plant during the shooting. Most of the employees ran into a nearby bar and grill, Typsy Tavern, said co-owner Chasity Bates.

Vandermosten, a five-year employee of the facility, quit the day before the shooting, McBride said.

“Being a recent employee, he knows the ins and outs of that building,” McBride said. “And so, he was able to get in, but he went in through a side door.”

In the scurry after the shooting, some called 911 from inside the plant and many employees called from the Tipsy Tavern.

Anderson County deputies responded to the scene at 10:40 p.m. within five minutes of the first 911 call and all shooting had ceased by the time they got there, McBride said. 

“There’s a few theories floating around that we’ve gathered from some of the employees that he kind of had an infatuation with someone there and probably was not received on the other end,” McBride said.

Tipsy Tavern brought in people, secured the doors and helped people to shelter in place while law enforcement responded, McBride said.

An employee at the tavern, Jessica Poore, said many of the people who sheltered with her are her regulars, who get take-out during their lunch breaks.

She said they turned out the lights and kept the people safe until deputies arrived.

By 10:50 p.m. the plant had been searched by deputies three times, McBride said.

“Very stressful situation going into a door like that not knowing what’s on the other end of it. But our deputies acted just like they were trained and did an extraordinary job trying to clear the building.”

Employees were taken to NewSpring Church, where they spoke with detectives about the shooting.

“We are obviously very shocked by what happened, very sad that this kind of thing would happen here,” McBride said. “And it’s becoming all too common in many places.”

The investigation is ongoing by the Anderson County Office of the Coroner and the Anderson County Sheriff’s Office. - WLBG and Anderson Independent on-line



Authorities captured the man wanted in connection to Wednesday’s Wells Fargo bank robbery.

After fleeing Greenwood, the man decided to visit a strip club in Greenville where someone recognized him, Greenwood Police Chief T.J. Chaudoin said.

“You can’t make this stuff up,” he said.

Charles Michael Edenfield, 50, was arrested Wednesday night in Greenville and will be brought to Greenwood to face charges.

In addition to facing an armed robbery charge in Greenwood, Greenville County online jail records show Edenfield is facing two drug possession counts.

Edenfield has an extensive history with law enforcement in the Myrtle Beach area, dating back to 1989. His past offenses include grand larceny, public intoxication, carrying a pistol unlawfully, assault and battery of a high an aggravated nature, forgery, shoplifting, public disorderly conduct and multiple drug charges. 

Greenwood Police Department Public Information Officer Jonathan Link said that just before 10 a.m. Wednesday, a man entered the bank at 345 Bypass 72 NW. He slipped a bank teller a note stating his intention to rob the bank, then was given an undisclosed amount of money and he left through the front door.

Link said the robber was caught on surveillance video and officers were able to identify the robber as Edenfield. Link said no one saw him with a firearm, and no one was injured. - Greenwood Index-Journal on-line


American Legion Post 25 Donates $4,000 Towards K9 Officers For District 55

Monday, May 2, 2022

Recently WLBG reported about a request from Dr. Ameca Thomas, Superintendent of Laurens County School District 55 asking for community support in a project that could keep kids safer at school.

She proposed that the district accept donations to fund two K9 officers trained to detect the presence of firearms.  One of the dogs would go the Laurens County Sheriff’s Office and one to the Laurens Police Department.  The cost would be nearly $20,000 to fund both K9 officers.

One local organization has already responded in a significant way.  On Saturday, American Legion Post 25  held an event on the Square in Laurens raising money to fund the purchase or construction of a post home.

But during that event Post 25 gave away money.  The veterans of the American Legion presented a check in the amount of $4,000 to go toward providing the K9s that Dr. Thomas requested.

A Go Fund Me page to raise money from community members has raised $1,805 as of Sunday evening.  That amount combined with the donation from American Legion Post 25 means that almost 25% of the required funds are already available.

On Saturday afternoon Dr. Thomas was joined on stage by Captain Heath Copeland of the Laurens Police Department and Laurens County Sheriff Don Reynolds to accept the donation from Post Commander Jim Peterson. — WLBG


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