When you are charged with a crime or are involved in an accident, it can seem like the world is crashing down around you. Between the threat of incarceration and the chance of financial loss, these foreboding situations often feel overwhelming. Friends and family cut ties, your employer threatens termination, and life seems hopeless. It is imperative to have a fighter on your side during these trying times: one that will stick with you through thick and thin, without any judgments.
Welcome to the Law Office of Richard Waring: where defending your rights and freedoms is paramount in securing your future.
Richard implements a powerfully simple yet effective model for all his clients’ cases:
When you are ready to fight back against the allegations against you, it is time to call the Law Office of Richard Waring – a criminal defense attorney on Charleston, SC, with the knowledge, experience, and drive to defend you during your most difficult time.
Richard Waring began his commitment to community service years ago. As a young man, he would spend his summers volunteering his time to help needy communities.
As an adult, his desire to help others manifested itself while I served as a prosecutor for "close to 10 years."?. During this time, he would take part in some of the most difficult trials in the Lowcountry’s history. He prosecuted thousands of individuals for crimes such as assault and battery, armed robbery, drug crimes, DUI, financial crimes, and even murder.
His time as a prosecutor was priceless, giving him valuable insight and knowledge into the inner workings of Charleston’s legal system. Today, Richard uses that experience to vigorously defend good, hardworking men and women whose freedoms are only one judgment away from disappearing.
Whether you made a mistake and need a second chance or have been wrongfully accused of a crime, you need a professional who has put in time on both sides. At the Law Office of Richard Waring, you can rest easy knowing this former prosecutor will fight tooth and nail for your freedom.
When you are charged with a crime, it can become a horrible experience. The range of emotions one goes through can be taxing: embarrassment, humiliation, regret, sadness, despair. The domino effect that often happens when charged with a crime can be awful, as well: loss of job, abandonment by your family or significant other, dirty looks from those in your community.
Fortunately, a criminal defense attorney in Charleston, SC, can help restore your reputation and repair your life. In times of legal crises, your friends and family may cut ties, but Richard Waring will be on your side from the time you call his office to the time your case is resolved.
Having prosecuted thousands of cases in South Carolina, Richard has a set of skills and experiences; assets that have guided him to win criminal cases against the government. Richard truly knows the criminal justice system’s ins and outs and is dedicated to fighting for his clients to achieve the best possible outcome on their criminal cases.
While some cases result in a positive outcome quickly, others must go to trial. Much like a combat athlete trains for months, hones his or her skills, and goes to war with an opponent, Richard Waring has prepared for and battled it out in many high-profile trials.
When you trust the Law Office of Richard Waring, you can rest assured that you are in capable hands. Each of our criminal defense clients receives the following when entrusting Richard Waring as their criminal defense lawyer in Charleston:
The following are common cases that Richard Waring can handle for you:
There are several key players in the criminal justice system, each with its own roles. The prosecutor is tasked with enforcing laws and convicting offenders. The judge serves as an unbiased decision-maker. The criminal defense attorney’s role is to protect the rights of the individual who is charged with a crime – a vitally important role in the criminal justice world.
Having a proactive, experienced criminal defense lawyer on your side almost always improves your chance of a positive outcome. While their primary role is to defend your rights and protect you from excessive sentences, they have many other duties.
When you entrust Richard Waring as your defense advocate, he will fight to protect your rights throughout the case by:
As a defendant, you have important rights. Some of the rights that Richard Waring will fight to protect on your behalf are:
While United States law does not mandate that a defense attorney be assigned to a defendant, the prosecutor must uphold your right to legal representation. If you cannot afford an attorney in Charleston, the government must supply you with a public defender.
While United States law does not mandate that a defense attorney be assigned to a defendant, the prosecutor must uphold your right to legal representation. If you cannot afford an attorney in Charleston, the government must supply you with a public defender.
If you or a member of your family is facing criminal charges in Charleston, there is no doubt that you are anxious about the road ahead. You are not alone – most of our criminal defense clients worry about the uncertainties surrounding the legal process and what is next in their case.
At the Law Office of Richard Waring, we empathize with this stress, and as such, make every effort to address anxiety-inducing questions like:
We cannot answer these questions in detail until we have time to review your case and speak with you one-on-one. Until that time, this high-level view of Charleston’s criminal case timeline can offer some insight into what lies ahead.
This is the first step in the criminal case timeline. During this time, police officer(s) will investigate the potential crime at hand and arrest whomever the officer(s) believes to be responsible. At this point, the person in question is considered a Defendant.
Shortly after the arrest (typically within the same day), defendants are granted an initial bond hearing. This short proceeding determines whether a defendant will be released from jail while charges are pending. It is wise to hire a criminal defense lawyer in Charleston, SC, before this hearing so that they may argue on your behalf.
The purpose of the preliminary hearing is to determine whether or not there is sufficient evidence (or probable cause) for the case to carry on. Defendants must request this hearing within 20 days of their initial bond setting. Hearings typically commence within three to six weeks. It is especially important that defendants retain the services of an experienced criminal defense attorney at this stage.
The main purpose of this court date is to determine if the defendant has hired an attorney or will need a public defender appointed to them. If you have an attorney before this hearing, defendants are not required to be present. The initial appearance typically happens 45 days after the arrest.
n some cases, the State may offer a plea offer to the defendant. If the defendant accepts this deal, a hearing will be scheduled to finalize the defendant’s acceptance. If the defendant pleads guilty, they are typically sentenced on the spot. If the defendant rejects the plea, he or she may have to go before the judge to ensure they understand the consequences of rejecting a plea offer.
Under Rule 5 of the South Carolina Rules of Criminal Procedure, the defendant will receive all evidence that will be used against them. As your criminal defense attorneys in Charleston, we will submit a written request to the court to obtain this information. It may take the State weeks or months to turn over their evidence, especially if that evidence is new.
The first barrier for the State to prosecute takes place during the preliminary hearing. The second occurs during the indictment phase. In general terms, an indictment is a document that details the criminal charges which the defendant must face. Each crime listed on the indictment is called a “count.” During this phase, the State will gather a “grand jury” comprised of public citizens. This jury is presented with evidence to help them approve or disapprove of the charges contained in the indictment. If the indictment is approved, the defendant’s case will proceed to trial. If it is rejected, charges are usually dropped.
During the trial, both the defense and prosecution will present evidence to a jury, who will hand down a final verdict. The prosecutor’s job during the trial is to convince the jury, beyond any reasonable doubt, that the defendant is guilty. The defendant is under no obligation to prove anything. As an experienced criminal defense lawyer and former prosecutor, Richard Waring will work hard to convince the jury of his client’s innocence while pointing out holes in the prosecution’s case.
Typically, a trial in Charleston includes the following phases:
For years, Julie and Rowan Taylor dreamed of what it would be like to live in Charleston, S.C.“We first came in 2005 — long weekend, no kids,” said Mr. Taylor, 54, the managing partner of a private equity firm. “And fell in love.”After that, they often visited the city from their home in New Canaan, Conn., and their admiration for its handsomely weathered buildings, towering palms and expansive oaks — as well as its thumping urban heart — only grew.But Mr. Taylor worked for a com...
For years, Julie and Rowan Taylor dreamed of what it would be like to live in Charleston, S.C.
“We first came in 2005 — long weekend, no kids,” said Mr. Taylor, 54, the managing partner of a private equity firm. “And fell in love.”
After that, they often visited the city from their home in New Canaan, Conn., and their admiration for its handsomely weathered buildings, towering palms and expansive oaks — as well as its thumping urban heart — only grew.
But Mr. Taylor worked for a company based in New York City, and the couple had three daughters who had their own friends and routines, so a move didn’t seem realistic.
As the years passed, their daughters moved out and Mr. Taylor founded his own firm, so the idea began to feel less far-fetched. They had welcomed a fourth daughter to their family in the interim — Pippa, now 10 — but a relocation still seemed manageable. So in 2016, on a flight down to Charleston, Mr. Taylor decided to run a real estate search on his iPad.
“He leaned over on the airplane and said, ‘Look at this house,’” said Ms. Taylor, 54. “I said, ‘We’ve never been inside one of these. You want to go look?’”
He did. And after touring a few houses, Mr. Taylor upped the ante. “He said, ‘Which one do you like best?’” Ms. Taylor said. “He called my bluff.”
They picked a house, made an offer and began envisioning life in their new home — until the deal fell apart. But by then, it was too late to turn back.
They looked at more houses while consulting with Eddie Fava, of the Charleston firm E E Fava Architects. Ms. Taylor was game for buying a house that needed some cosmetic updates, although after living through a full-blown renovation in Connecticut, she set a guiding principle for their search: “I didn’t want a project,” she said.
But that was before Mr. Taylor fell for a stately Federal house from 1788 in the South of Broad neighborhood. The house was 8,130 square feet, with expansive rooms and its own walled garden. But it needed a thorough restoration and updating, which they wanted to avoid. Still, Mr. Taylor couldn’t get the house out of his head, so he asked Mr. Fava to take a look.
Mr. Fava came back with a glowing report: “I said, ‘It’s everything you don’t want to do, but it will be everything you want, without a doubt.’ I said, ‘It’s the big project. It’s going to be way more than you thought, but you’re going to be as happy as can be when it’s done.’”
The Taylors swallowed hard and bought the house for $5.35 million in January 2017. Then they moved into a rental down the street and began the long process of reviving the house with Mr. Fava, Betsy Berry, an interior designer, and Sheila Wertimer, a landscape architect and a partner of Wertimer & Cline.
Although the project involved a gut renovation, the design team was intent on retaining the house’s character while dragging it into the 21st century with contemporary systems and spaces, including rooms for watching TV and working from home.
“I believe you can have the best of both worlds in these types of homes, if they’re thoughtfully put together,” Mr. Fava said. “It doesn’t have to be a museum house.”
They removed and retained the original doors, molding and paneling, so they could be copied as needed and put back. They patched the existing floors with matching pieces of antique heart pine and restored the staircases.
Mr. Fava also made significant architectural changes, including removing the floors from a connected former carriage house to create a new double-height family room on the ground level, with a large dressing room connected to the primary suite above it.
Ms. Berry was just as intent on mixing new with old. “This was my dream project, because the history of the house is just so amazing,” she said. “What I love to do is respect and honor that age, but also bring in a new feeling of youth, and modern touches, to give it more life and spirit.”
In the entrance hall and in a sun porch, she had the pine floors painted with a decorative pattern and then sanded and scuffed to evoke a sense of age. In the dining room, which is furnished with a mix of antiques and custom contemporary pieces, she covered the walls with a custom hand-painted scenic wallpaper from Gracie and hung a Branching Bubble chandelier by Lindsey Adelman from the ceiling.
In the living room, where she suspended a 1950s Fontana Arte chandelier from the center of an ornate ceiling medallion, she proposed lacquering the walls and was surprised when Ms. Taylor urged her to use a daring raspberry hue.
“I had originally showed her a safer color, but she was like, ‘No, I want color. I want it to be bold,’” Ms. Berry said. “It was scary for me, but that room turned out beautifully.”
After two years of design and construction, and more than $4 million, the project the Taylors hadn’t wanted to take on was finally complete. Just before the family moved in, near the end of December 2019, “We moved everything into their closets, made the beds and decorated for Christmas,” Ms. Berry said. “We had all the fires going and Christmas music playing.”
She added: “We walked them through the house with all their daughters, and then we went up to the salon. And Julie and I just cried and hugged.”
CHARLESTON COUNTY, S.C. (WCIV) — On Tuesday, Finkel Law Firm filed a lawsuit against Michael Miller, the elected official in charge of the Charleston County Register of Deeds.Miller is now responding. He told ABC News 4 the Register of Deeds Office will be closed the next three Wednesdays in December to work on the back log.He said that is just one of the measures he is taking to address the issue.The lawsuit said Michael Miller has neglected and failed in his duties as the Charleston County Register of Deeds....
CHARLESTON COUNTY, S.C. (WCIV) — On Tuesday, Finkel Law Firm filed a lawsuit against Michael Miller, the elected official in charge of the Charleston County Register of Deeds.
Miller is now responding. He told ABC News 4 the Register of Deeds Office will be closed the next three Wednesdays in December to work on the back log.
He said that is just one of the measures he is taking to address the issue.
The lawsuit said Michael Miller has neglected and failed in his duties as the Charleston County Register of Deeds.
"It's essentially asking the court to issue an order to compel the Register of Deeds to comply with statutory responsibilities to timely record documents," said Magalie Creech, an attorney with Finkel Law Firm.
All real estate-related transactions in Charleston County are publicly recorded in the Register of Deeds Office.
The lawsuit claims it can take up to four months to process some real estate documents mailed to the office.
Something Finkel Law Firm said is against the law.
"Satirically the register of deeds is required to record those documents within 1 month of receiving them, and in the order they receive. If that's not being done, that that is an issue," she said.
But the issue is not just about deeds.
"The mailing of county tax bill notices. If those owners have not been recorded as they should be then the previous owner is going to be receiving those tax bills as opposed to the new owner," she said.
Miller did not comment on what caused the back log. We talked to him in 2019, when he told us the county was digitalizing some land documents to be viewed online.
Jenny Honeycutt is a lawyer and a member of the Charleston County Council.
"This has been an ongoing challenge for several months in part due to challenges with staffing," Honeycutt said.
She said the issue has come to her attention from different groups including the South Carolina Bar Real Estate section. Who questioned if the office could handle what was being submitted.
"It is extremely difficult for practitioners, being a lawyer myself, to anticipate their clients needs when a critical county service is closed arbitrary days," Honeycutt said.
There were at least 14 days the office of Register of Deeds was closed or had adjusted hours. Honeycutt said the office is a critical service in the county, especially when the real estate market in Charleston is booming.
However, because the office is run by an independently elected official, she said the county can't do much to help.
"County Council has done all in its control to provide the resources necessary to the office to study online submissions and equip them with more staff," she said.
The lawsuit is calling for the immediate filing of all real estate documents and to monitor the office for a period of time to ensure all work is done in a timely manner.
Miller said he will be releasing more information soon. ABC News 4 will keep you updated.
CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD)- Seven designers from across the Southeast have installed vignettes in the historic Aiken-Rhett House in Downtown Charleston.The displays are part of a larger event called ‘...
CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD)- Seven designers from across the Southeast have installed vignettes in the historic Aiken-Rhett House in Downtown Charleston.
The displays are part of a larger event called ‘Illumination Charleston,‘ which is described as “a weekend of inspired design, Southern culture, and holiday décor in Charleston, SC.” sponsored by Southern Living in partnership with the Historic Charleston Foundation.
Over the past several months, designers have been preparing their vignette designs which are inspired by the history and culture of Charleston.
A vignette is a grouping of objects, usually comprised of homewares pieces, but might also feature flowers and other natural elements, art, craft objects, and other mementos. Each designer was designated a room in the Aiken-Rhett House in which to create their vignette.
Tami Ramsay and Krista Nye Nicholas of Cloth & Kind said their Parlor vignette was designed in homage to Dorcas Richardson, one of the enslaved women who spent much of her life serving the Aiken-Rhett family.
The sign outside the Cloth & Kind display reads in part:
‘From the few historical records available, Dorcas embodied all of the characteristics of a woman we admire- nurturing, resilient, and compassionate. Dorcas was not ultimately defined by her enslavement. Her legacy is that of a multifaceted, admirable, intelligent woman– a daughter, a friend, a leader, an entrepreneurial business owner, and a humanitarian.’
Nicholas said the spirit of Dorcas Richardson was at the forefront of their minds and described it as “a current that ran through us as we were designing.”
For Ramsay and Nicholas, highlighting the Aiken-Rhett House’s involvement in a “dark period of history” was of particular importance.
“It felt very important to us to recognize and acknowledge the history of this house,” Ramsey said. “We felt it incumbent upon ourselves to research about the house, the people who lived here, and especially the enslaved people.”
The designers said they picked pieces that drew upon the culture and iconic imagery of the Lowcountry, including palmetto trees and traditional woven floor matting.
“We’ve been working with this Charleston theme of having references to palms and palmettos and so some of the shapes that are on the lampshade, in addition to the piece over the mantle, really reference some of that,” Ramsay said. “The colors very much reflect the coast, the ocean, and the beach.”
Other designers who installed vignettes include Tammy Connor, Jane Scott Hodges, Jenny Keenan, Amanda Lindroth, Canaan Marshall, and Jason Reeves.
The displays can be viewed Friday and Saturday at the Aiken-Rhett House. Tickets can be purchased on the ‘Illumination Charleston’ website.
CHARLESTON COUNTY, S.C. (WCSC) - Replacing a few lightbulbs might not seem like a big deal, but when your enterprise has more than 100 buildings, thousands of rooms and lighting for parking lots and athletic facilities, the costs can add up.However, swapping out old lightbulbs for more energy efficient ones is all part of a targeted efforted by the Charleston County School District to reduce its overall energy consumption.Associate of Facilities Management Ron Kramps says the program saves the taxpayer about $5 million a year....
CHARLESTON COUNTY, S.C. (WCSC) - Replacing a few lightbulbs might not seem like a big deal, but when your enterprise has more than 100 buildings, thousands of rooms and lighting for parking lots and athletic facilities, the costs can add up.
However, swapping out old lightbulbs for more energy efficient ones is all part of a targeted efforted by the Charleston County School District to reduce its overall energy consumption.
Associate of Facilities Management Ron Kramps says the program saves the taxpayer about $5 million a year.
“We spend about $13 million a year on our utility bill, just to power all the computers in the classrooms and the lights and all that stuff that’s going on in the classroom,” Kramps said. “Whatever I can save in the energy program can go back to education programs in the school.”
Lightbulbs are the low hanging fruit according to Kramps, which he says pay for themselves in about two years. The big-ticket energy savers are projects that upgrade heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems and fix up older buildings.
“We’ll do roofing and window and door replacements that tighten up the facility. So we’re getting a little bit better controlled infiltration or less uncontrolled infiltration of air coming through openings, window and doors,” Kramps said. “I’ve spent about $60 million just over the last five years on HVAC projects.”
Next year, Kramps says the facilities department has about 100 projects in the works. While every project they do will have an energy efficiency component, he says half of them are being done exclusively to reduce the energy bill.
“You’re trying to do a few different things,” Kramps said. “You’re trying to save natural resources at the big picture perspective, burning less coal or natural gas, or what have you to create energy. But really, we’re trying to save dollars and in the school district.”
The efforts are paying off. Throughout the 2021 school year, energy usage per square foot has decreased 4.2%, despite the increased usage of air purifiers to combat COVID.
In the last 21 years, the district’s square footage has increased by 74% while energy usage has only increased by 15%. The practical upshot of which is a total decrease of about 37% of energy used per square foot.
“Certainly, the newer schools are going to perform the best in terms of energy consumption. But you know, you go to a place like Morningside Middle School, which is an older school, we did a lighting project there just a few years ago,” Kramps said. “Generally speaking, the older schools need a little bit more attention than the newer schools, but my capital maintenance program is very much needs based.”
Part of the program is an incentive program that rewards schools for encouraging teachers and students to reduce energy consumption by turning off lights and unplugging devices that aren’t being used.
Kramps says they’ll give out about $350,000 to schools with programs that enhance education around energy conservation. Kramps says they inspect schools seven times a year to see if devices are unplugged, blinds are pulled and lights are off.
Copyright 2021 WCSC. All rights reserved.
A Charleston County, South Carolina official tasked with processing property records in the second-most populous county in the state is under fire for alleged “chronic and willful failure” and “neglect” in performing his “ministerial duties,” according to a lawsuit filed last week.Charleston County register of deeds (ROD) ...
A Charleston County, South Carolina official tasked with processing property records in the second-most populous county in the state is under fire for alleged “chronic and willful failure” and “neglect” in performing his “ministerial duties,” according to a lawsuit filed last week.
“Miller has allowed chronic delays of well over one month in the filing of real estate documents delivered to the Charleston ROD since late 2019 and these delays increased significantly by 2021, with some real estate documents being filed as late as four months after delivery,” a lawsuit (.pdf) filed by the Columbia, S.C.-based Finkel Law Firm noted. “Miller has also adopted a practice of immediately filing real estate documents that are hand delivered to his office, while allowing hundreds or even thousands of real estate documents delivered to his office by U.S. mail or parcel delivery to be stored at the Charleston ROD until a later date, often months after the date of delivery, before they are filed.”
Miller’s alleged failure has “caused and will continue to cause substantial harm and potential legal liability to the parties to those real estate transactions and the attorneys and law firms who represent those parties,” the lawsuit added.
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The suit refers to Miller’s alleged failure as a “dereliction of duty” – statutory neglect that has exposed the law firm “to potential liability” and “substantially interfered with (its) ability to meet its professional obligations to protect the interests of its clients in legal matters.”
The lawsuit was filed last Wednesday (November 24, 2021) in Charleston County. It seeks a writ of mandamus (or a judicial edict) “ordering Miller to immediately comply with his non-discretionary and ministerial duty under law to file all real estate documents within one month of delivery to the Charleston ROD and to record these documents under the date and in the order of time at which they are delivered.”
The suit does not seek damages, but “expressly reserves the right to bring subsequent actions for such damages” on behalf of “itself or its clients as aggrieved parties.”
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Miller is the first black register of deeds in Charleston County history. Last November, he gave an interview with Lowcountry journalist Quintin Washington in which he described the office as having been “neglected for quite some time.”
“The office is not modernized,” Miller told Washington at the time. “We are what we call an all-paper office, we collect nothing but paper – there’s no electronic, no e-recording at all.”
I reached out to Miller on Monday afternoon but a spokesperson for his office declined to respond to the allegations contained in the lawsuit.
As our regular readers are well aware, this news outlet has an open microphone policy … meaning anyone with an intelligent perspective on an issue (and certainly anyone who is featured in our coverage) has the opportunity to address our readers directly should they avail themselves of it. Oh, and unlike the mainstream media we don’t bury these responses on some back page … we feature them every bit as prominently as our original articles.
Should Miller seek to use our microphone to respond to this lawsuit, I will be sure to update this story accordingly …
(Via: Charleston County)
Will Folks is the founding editor of the news outlet you are currently reading. Prior to founding FITSNews, he served as press secretary to the governor of South Carolina. He lives in the Midlands region of the state with his wife and seven children. And yes, he has LOTS of hats (including that “We Are Family” Pittsburgh Pirates’ lid pictured above).
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