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HEAT ADVISORY

Heat advisory issued for eastern South Carolina

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - It's going to be dangerously hot again in eastern South Carolina.

The National Weather Service has issued heat advisories for a second day along the entire coast and into the Pee Dee.

Forecasters say that on Friday temperatures will range from 95 to 100 degrees. The heat indexes could reach 110 degrees.

Forecasters say such conditions could lead to heat-related illnesses.

Officials at Grand Strand Medical Center tell The Sun News of Myrtle Beach that because of the humidity, they have seen an increase in patients with respiratory complaints. About half a dozen patients were treated Thursday at Conway Medical Center for heat illnesses.

BEACH BIKERS

Black leaders want voice in SC beach safety plans

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (AP) - Black leaders say they want a voice in plans to ensure safety in the Myrtle Beach area over the Memorial Day weekend.

Myrtle Beach NAACP president Mickey James and other leaders say they are concerned about more than just the Memorial Day holiday weekend. They say there needs to be more security year-round.

The leaders told local media outlets at a news conference Thursday that black leaders are not being involved enough in plans to improve safety.

Three people died and seven were injured in shootings in Myrtle Beach last Memorial Day, the weekend the annual Atlantic Beach Bikefest is held.

Two local task forces have held meetings on how to improve security. Gov. Nikki Haley has called for an end to Bikefest.

MEMORIAL DAY SHOOTING

SC man wounded in Memorial Day shooting charged

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (AP) - A man who was shot and wounded in a Memorial Day weekend shooting in Myrtle Beach has been arrested on a weapons charge.

Multiple media outlets report that 24-year-old Keith Alextrus Williams of Lincolnville is charged with having a stolen pistol when he was shot.

Williams was injured and three people were killed in the shooting at a Myrtle Beach motel. Williams was hospitalized for several days.

Police Capt. David Knipes says the stolen gun Williams had was not used in the shooting. It was not clear if he has a lawyer.

Police have not made any arrests in the shootings that followed a fight. The other victims were 28-year-old Jamie Williams of Ladson, 21-year-old Devonte Dantzler and 22-year-old Sandy Gaddis Barnwell, both of Summerville.

FORMER LAWMAKER INDICTED

Former lawmaker Thad Viers to appear in court

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - A former South Carolina lawmaker is appearing in federal court next week on charges he helped a businessman hide assets and then lied about it to federal agents.

Court records show Thad Viers' arraignment is set for Thursday in Florence. A lawyer listed for him didn't immediately respond to a message Friday seeking comment.

Viers faces charges of money laundering, lying to an IRS agent and other charges. The Myrtle Beach Republican ran for U.S. House in 2012 but was derailed after a harassment arrest that led to a guilty plea and a 60-day weekend jail sentence.

In 2007, he pleaded no contest to illegal communication and was fined $500 for threats made to a man who was dating a woman who was Viers' estranged wife at that time.

CHARLESTON VA-CAREGIVERS

VA reviews caregiver support in Charleston

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) - A report from the Veterans Affairs Inspector General's Office recommends improvements to the support program for family members and others who care for veterans treated at the Ralph Johnson Medical Center in Charleston.

The program provides medical, training, travel and financial benefits to caregivers for veterans and active duty service members.

The report finds that half the applications to participate in the program in Charleston were not processed in the required 45 days. It also found the center staff did not conduct 90-day and annual follow-up visits as required by law.

The report makes a number of recommendations, including that applications be handled in a timely manner.

Center Director Scott Isaacks agrees with the recommendations and said they should all be implemented by December.

BURGLARY DEATH

Sheriff: Man killed, others injured in SC burglary

DARLINGTON, S.C. (AP) - The Darlington County Sheriff's office is investigating a burglary that left one man dead and several others injured.

Area media outlets report that the burglary happened early Friday morning in the Mechanicsville area of Darlington County.

Coroner J. Todd Hardee says 25-year-old Marquis Benjamin of Darlington was shot and killed. It was not immediately clear who else may have been injured.

Deputies say that Benjamin was believed to be involved in the burglary. They say they are also looking for a second suspect who may have been wounded.

SOCIAL SECURITY-FRAUD

Columbia woman pleads to Social Security fraud

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - A Columbia woman has pleaded guilty to fraud involving Social Security benefits.

U.S. Attorney Bill Nettles said Thursday that 68-year-old Carolyn M. Taylor pleaded guilty to theft of government funds.

Nettles says Taylor's mother was receiving Social Security benefits when she died in 1998. Taylor was accused of failing to tell the federal agency that her mother had died and continued to collect the dead woman's benefits until last December.

Nettles says the overpayment was nearly $100,000.

Taylor faces up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine when she is sentenced later.

HABITAT HOME

Habitat finishes 120th Horry County home

CONWAY, S.C. (AP) - Habitat for Humanity is celebrating the completion of its 120th house in Horry County.

The new home near Conway is being dedicated on Friday. Fran Soles and her family, the new occupants of the home, invested more than 600 hours working on it as a requirement for becoming Habitat homeowners.

The Horry County affiliate of Habitat for Humanity is one of 1,500 in the United States that helps build affordable housing for those with low incomes.

According to the organization's web site, the nonprofit has helped build or repair more than 800,000 homes worldwide.

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