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S.C. Sheriff Candidate Charged with Planning Kidnapping of Judge

May 31, 2012  | 

Photo: BarteeForSheriff.com
Photo: BarteeForSheriff.com

The race for sheriff in Oconee County, S.C., took a bizarre turn Wednesday with the arrest of Republican candidate James Bartee for trying to hire someone to kidnap a retired S.C. circuit judge. Bartee is one of four candidates competing June 12 to be the Republican nominee in November for Oconee County sheriff.

The former Secret Service agent's qualification for the office was challenged by retired S.C. Circuit Judge James C. Williams Jr. Williams, who is supporting another candidate, had sued to get Bartee off the ballot, arguing Bartee is not a "certified law enforcement officer" under S.C. law and therefore can't run for sheriff, reports The State.

A court hearing was to have been held Wednesday on the case in Anderson. The hearing was underway when Bartee was arrested by State Law Enforcement Division agents at the courthouse, according to The Independent Mail of Anderson.

Bartee was charged with "solicitation to commit a felony." According to the arrest warrant, Bartee tried to "encourage and solicit an individual" to kidnap Williams. He allegedly gave that individual money to purchase items needed in the kidnapping. SLED said evidence includes audio of the solicitation.

Read the full The State story.

Tags: Oconee County (S.C.) Sheriff, Elections, Kidnapping


Comments (3)

Displaying 1 - 3 of 3

Random @ 6/2/2012 12:56 AM

I have a feeling that the judge that presides over this case will not be sympathetic.

Fed Cop @ 6/7/2012 7:26 AM

Can we say "What a Dumb A**!" Wonder if he's one of the Obama SS group looking for a new job?

AM @ 5/26/2014 11:10 AM

I personally know the Special Agent involved and he was set-up as he refused to get out of the Sheriff's race. If you know anything about Southern politics, you would look further than your local newspaper for evidence of a crime here. Hopefully, you who are commenting here aren't arresting people with trumped up, tainted evidence including a wiretap with no original tape available. The guy is innocent and was punished for opening his mouth when more than $505,500 went missing in confiscated drug monies at the Oconee County Sheriff's Office.

Check your facts before you condemn another LEO especially one this honest, and ethical.

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