COLUMBIA, S.C.—The country is pretty much sick and tired of South Carolina stories that expose the vulgar truth about public officials. We have to admit that as much as we venerate the vulgar, so are we, yet the stories just keep coming.
Most recent is Monday’s report about ex-Republican-legislator-turned-current-deputy assistant-attorney-general Roland Corning, who was pulled over by a local cop after a chase that started in a secluded section of a local cemetery.
Inside Corning's SUV, the officer found Corning and a young woman. According to the police report, Corning and the woman, an 18-year-old employee of the Platinum Plus Gentleman's Club, gave conflicting explanations about why they were in the cemetery. The officer searched the SUV, finding sex toys and Viagra, which Corning told the officer he keeps in the car “just in case.”
The officer, Michael Wines, said he called his wife, who happens to work in the state attorney general’s office, to see if Corning was telling the truth about being an assistant attorney general. A short while later, Wines let the couple go on their way without issuing a citation. Unfortunately for Corning, Wines’ call to his wife apparently sealed the assistant AG’s fate.
“Megan Wines then reported the incident to Deputy Attorney General John McIntosh, who relayed the information to Attorney General Henry McMaster, according to Trey Walker, spokesman for McMaster's office,” reported The State. “Less than two hours later, Corning was no longer employed with McMaster's office, Walker said Tuesday.”
McMaster said Wednesday he had indeed received credible information about inappropriate behavior Monday afternoon, and confirmed that by the close of business that day, Corning no longer was employed by his office. The trip to the cemetery, he added, "would not be appropriate, at any time, for an assistant attorney general.”
Were there a contest for the wittiest headline about the episode, CNET’s would take the prize: “So. Carolina can't blame this sex case on Craigslist.”