Hearings This Week

There are a number of bond reconsideration/reduction hearings this week. We will address the ones that concern us the most. Citizens can use the contact form at the 9th Circuit Solicitor’s website to comment on these hearings or call the victim/witness advocate.


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As part of the new Charleston Thug Life we will make every attempt to post a weekly list of bond reduction/reconsideration hearings we are concerned about. Your local “news” stations would rather fill their six or seven hours of daily news with a bunch of fluff that doesn’t really affect you.

First up is Earl Ancrum. He was arrested February 24rd, 2014 on charges of PWID Crack Cocaine and PWID Cocaine. He was given a total bond of $100,000. When he was arrested in February, Ancrum was free on total bond of $100,000 on charges from October of 2013 of PWID Crack Cocaine, PWID Cocaine and Trafficking Crack Cocaine. A motion to revoke those previous bonds was entered into the record on 6 March, 2014. Score a point for the 9th Circuit Solicitor.


hearings this week


In 1993 Ancrum was convicted of Assault on Police. He was sentenced by Judge Casey Manning to five years in prison, suspended on 1 day time served in the county jail.

In 2001 he was charged with Pointing & Presenting a Firearm and CDV High and Aggravated. The CDVHAN was dismissed by the 9th Circuit Solicitor. Judge Victor Rawl sentenced Ancrum to 5 years, suspended in favor of one year of probation on the pointing and presenting a firearm.

In 2004 Ancrum was charged with Peeping Tom. He pled guilty and was sentended to 180 days time served by Judge Thomas “Felon’s Friend” Hughston.

In 2011 Ancrum was charged with 1st Degree Assault & Battery for shooting his brother. The 9th Circuit Solicitor pled the case down to 2nd Degree Assault & Battery and Judge R. Markley Dennis sentenced Ancrum to 90 days.

It looks like Ancrum is representing himself at the hearing.

Next up is Brandon Derrick Brown. You can read all about his extensive criminal history in our previous post about him and his brother Martell. The brothers Brown shot a rival thug in the head in an incident on Leland Street in December of 2013. Brown wants a judge to set bond on the charge of Murder and probably desires a lower bond on the charge of Possession of a Weapon During a Violent Crime. That bond is currently set at $100,000.


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A dirty little secret of our “criminal justice” system is that incarcerated criminals can request bond reduction hearing every so often. Our next subject takes advantage of that.

Our next serial drug dealer has already has his bond lowered once. Deron Ferguson was arrested in April of 2013 on charges of Trafficking Cocaine, PWID Heroin and PWID Heroin Near a School. We aren’t sure what his original bond amounts were, but he was granted a bond reduction hearing in July of 2013. Judge James Gosnell reduced Ferguson’s total bond for all three charges to $30,000 in spite of his previous record.


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In 2004 Ferguson was charged with PWID Marijuana, PWID Cocaine, Possession of Cocaine and PWID Crack Cocaine Near a School. He pled guilty to all but the school proximity and PWID marijuana charges which were dismissed by the 9th Circuit Solicitor. The PWID crack charge was reduced to PWID cocaine. Judge Thomas “Felon’s Friend” Hughston sentenced Ferguson under the YOA to a term not to exceed one to six years, suspended in favor of 90 days shock incarceration.

Shock incarceration obviously didn’t work. In 2012 Ferguson was charged wtih PWID Marijuana and PWID Marijuana Near a School. Of course, the 9th Circuit Solicitor dismissed the school proximity charge. Judge Deadra Jefferson sentenced Ferguson to three years, suspended on 60 days times served and three years of probation.

These are just Ferguson’s GSC charges. He has racked up quite a few magistrate level charges also.

Next up Benjamin Fischer who allegedly set up the robbery of a friend who ended up getting shot. Fischer was charged with Attempted Murder. The judge will be hearing a motion to dismiss that charge this week. Maybe the “victim” decided he didn’t want his friend prosecuted. As you can see below Berkeley County has a hold on Fischer for pending charges.


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There is also a motion for a bond modification for Tyrus Goodwater. He kicked in the door his girlfriend’s Carlton Street home and beat her last month. You can read about it HERE. By clicking that link you will also find out Goodwater was out on a $10,000  public recognizance bond for CDV High & Aggravated when he kicked in that door. He was also out on a total of $15,000 bond for two PWID Marijuana charges still pending. He was given a total bond of $10,000 on the new CDV and Burglary charges and bonded out the same day.

Let’s hope the 9th Circuit Solicitor is successful in her quest for a bond modification on that 2012 CDVHAN charge. Point – 9th Circuit Solicitor for trying.


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Another point to the 9th Circuit Solicitor for asking for a bond revocation for armed robber Leonard Riley III. Remember him? He was charged with robbing a bank in Georgetown while out on a $250,000 bond for a 2013 armed robbery in Charleston County.


Leonard Riley

Leonard Riley



Tyreece Smith is in jail for a 2012 armed robbery and shooting. He has requested a number of bond reductions/consolidations. So far, they have all been denied. His bond currently stands at $250,000.

Smith has one prior in Charleston County general sessions court for Assault & Battery High and Aggravated which was pled down to simple assault. He was sentenced to one day for that one.


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Next up is problem prisoner Mark Laverd Swinton. He is requesting a bond reduction for a litany of charges. He has been in jail since February of 2012 when he and some gang members buddies tried to kill a few people at a hotel on Northwoods Boulevard. You can find his extensive criminal history at that link.


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Maybe someone should show this video during the hearing. This was Swinton’s bond hearing for throwing bodily fluids on a detention officer.




Nothing changes until citizens take action and apply pressure. Let your voices be heard.




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