Criminal Defense Attorney in Mount Pleasant, SC

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Fighting For You

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:

  • The Relentless Pursuit of a Positive Outcome
  • The Use of Creative Problem-Solving Tactics
  • Excellent Communication

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 Mount Pleasant, SC, with the knowledge, experience, and drive to defend you during your most difficult time.

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Richard Waring

From Prosecution to Protecting Your Rights in Mount Pleasant

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 Mount Pleasant’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.

Criminal Defense

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 Mount Pleasant, 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 Mount Pleasant:

  • Vigorous representation
  • Quick response to emails and phone calls
  • Compassionate, understanding treatment
  • You will never be treated as unimportant or second-rate
  • Thorough investigation for your case
  • All of your constitutional rights, including the right to a fair trial, upheld
  • Notifications of important updates

The following are common cases that Richard Waring can handle for you:

  • Misdemeanor DUI/DWI
  • Felony DUI/DWI
  • Violent Crimes including: Assault and Battery of a High and Aggravated Nature, Assault and Battery, Attempted Murder, and Murder
  • Strong Armed Robbery
  • Armed Robbery
  • Drug Crimes
  • Manufacturing of Marijuana, Methamphetamine, Heroin, Crack, or Cocaine
  • Distribution of Marijuana, Methamphetamine, Heroin, Crack, or Cocaine
  • Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana, Methamphetamine, Heroin, Crack, or Cocaine
  • Gun crimes including: pointing or present a firearm, possession of a pistol with obliterated serial numbers, possession of a stolen pistol
  • Restoration of Your Gun Rights
  • Trespassing
  • Larceny and Burglary
  • Property Crimes
  • Domestic Violence
  • Shoplifting
  • Financial Crimes including: Forgery, financial transaction card theft, fake IDs, breach of trust, obtaining goods by false pretenses
  • Disorderly Conduct
  • Minor in Possession of Alcohol
  • Traffic Crimes including: driving without a license, speeding, reckless or careless driving
Criminal Defense
Importance Of Your Criminal Defense Attorney In Mount Pleasant, SC

Importance Of Your Criminal Defense Attorney In Mount Pleasant, SC

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:

  • Arguing in court to reduce how much you must pay to post bail
  • Being present during police interrogations and interviews
  • Discovering and applying potent legal defenses
  • Advising you on your decision to plead guilty, not guilty, or to go to trial (if applicable)
  • Explaining the implications of pleading guilty
  • Gathering evidence and interviewing witnesses relating to the allegations against you
  • Meticulously examining the circumstance surrounding your search and arrest (if applicable) to uncover Fourth Amendment violations
  • Meticulously examining any drug or DUI-related chemical tests to ensure accuracy and uncover errors
  • Representing you during scheduled hearings
  • Representing you during a jury trial
  • Working with the prosecutor to discuss plea deals or the possibility of a reduced sentence
  • If convicted, representing you during the sentencing phase and arguing on your behalf for a fair sentence

Knowing Your Rights

As a defendant, you have important rights. Some of the rights that Richard Waring will fight to protect on your behalf are:

  • The right to a speedy trial
  • The right to remain silent
  • The right against unreasonable seizures and searches
  • The right against unreasonable searches and seizures
  • The right against cruel and unusual punishment
  • In most cases, the right to a jury trial
  • The right of innocence until proven guilty
  • The right to legal representation

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 Mount Pleasant, 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 Mount Pleasant, the government must supply you with a public defender.

Knowing Your Rights
Knowing Your Rights

Criminal Case Timeline In Mount Pleasant, SC

If you or a member of your family is facing criminal charges in Mount Pleasant, 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:

  • How long will it take for my case to be resolved?
  • What type of sentence is common for the crime in which I am being accused?
  • Will the prosecutor offer me a favorable plea deal?

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 Mount Pleasant’s criminal case timeline can offer some insight into what lies ahead.

Arrest And Investigation

Arrest and Investigation

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.

Initial Bond Setting

Initial Bond Setting

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 Mount Pleasant, SC, before this hearing so that they may argue on your behalf.

Preliminary Hearing

Preliminary Hearing

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.

Initial Appearance

Initial Appearance

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.

Plea Offers

Plea Offers

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.

Discovery

Discovery

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 Mount Pleasant, 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.

Indictment

Indictment

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.

Trial

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 Mount Pleasant includes the following phases:

  • Jury Selection
  • Pre-Trial Motions
  • Opening Statements
  • The State’s Case
  • Directed Verdict
  • The Defense’s Case
  • The State’s Rebuttal
  • Closing Arguments
  • Jury Instructions and Deliberation
  • Verdict and Sentencing

Latest News in Mount Pleasant

Mount Pleasant Trader Joe’s beer and wine permit suspended after third underage violation

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Loyal Trader Joe’s customers will soon be able to buy their “two-buck chuck” again after the Mount Pleasant store had its beer and wine permit suspended.Sales were “off the table” for the last ten days following a ruling from a South Carolina administrative court.The suspension began on January 2 stemming from an undercover SLED operation from nearly two years ago.The agency reported that during a 40 store sting in February 2020, a clerk at the Trader Joe’s st...

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Loyal Trader Joe’s customers will soon be able to buy their “two-buck chuck” again after the Mount Pleasant store had its beer and wine permit suspended.

Sales were “off the table” for the last ten days following a ruling from a South Carolina administrative court.

The suspension began on January 2 stemming from an undercover SLED operation from nearly two years ago.

The agency reported that during a 40 store sting in February 2020, a clerk at the Trader Joe’s store sold a 6-pack of beer to a 19-year-old who was working with them.

That was the store’s third offense in three years.

According to court documents, the first was in November 2017 where the grocery store chain paid a $500 fine. The second, in March 2018, resulted in a $1,000 fine.

The South Carolina Department of Revenue, which issues alcohol and beverage licenses, has a procedure for each consecutive violation in selling alcohol to an underage customer.

In this case, the DOR made a final determination in February 2021 and imposed a 45-day suspension.

But the store challenged that.

Based on the estimates provided by the store manager, 12 to 13% of the store’s sales are alcohol and it is considered to have the highest volume of alcohol sales for the chain in the region

A suspension of 45 days would cost the store an estimated $750,000.

A regional vice president testified this would cause a decline in customer satisfaction and possibly lead to hours cut for employees due to the loss in revenue.

However, the DOR allows for “mitigating factors” to reduce penalties.

These include documented training for employees, internal checks and automated age verification programs (i.e. register system requires manual input of birth date before sale can be completed).

Judge Shirley Robinson, citing these mitigating factors present at Trader Joe’s store 752 and its good standing in the community, ordered the store to pay a $3,000 fine and institute a 10 day suspension instead of the 45 days.

The suspension also could not take place during the holiday season between November 19, 2021 and January 2, 2022.

The store can begin selling beer and wine again on Wednesday, January 12.

If there is a fourth violation within three years, the DOR could fully revoke the store’s permit, according to its penalty guidelines for ABL violations.

Copyright 2022 WCSC. All rights reserved.

Lowcountry officials battle opioid epidemic

MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCBD) – Lowcountry officials are working to fight an increasing opioid problem across the area and are making sure everyone takes part in the fight.Since 2019 more than 70,000 South Carolinians have died from drug overdoses and local agencies are making sure people know how and when to react to someone who is overdosing.“We are not just leaving it to law enforcement, EMS, and the hospital. We as community members can actually save somebody’s life,” says Caitlin Kratz, the Opioid Tre...

MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCBD) – Lowcountry officials are working to fight an increasing opioid problem across the area and are making sure everyone takes part in the fight.

Since 2019 more than 70,000 South Carolinians have died from drug overdoses and local agencies are making sure people know how and when to react to someone who is overdosing.

“We are not just leaving it to law enforcement, EMS, and the hospital. We as community members can actually save somebody’s life,” says Caitlin Kratz, the Opioid Treatment Director at the Charleston Center.

Statistics show that Charleston is the third highest county in South Carolina in overdose deaths following Horry and Greenville County.

“We know that drug use is a safety issue and that it’s affecting the lives of people in our community,” says Rachel Lefebre, the Police Assisted Addicted and Recovery Initiative Outreach Coordinator for the Charleston Police Department (CPD).

To help fight the epidemic, local agencies across Charleston County host monthly Narcan trainings to talk about opioid overdoses and how to effectively respond using the antidote called Narcan. Kratz with The Charleston Center says, bringing awareness is crucial as the pandemic has led to an uptick of overdoses.

“We can come together as a community and recognize it’s a problem we are all facing. We need to arm ourselves with the way that we can help end opioid overdoses in our own community,” says Kratz.

CPD received a $900,000 grant to help decrease opioid addiction and now they’re able to create the addiction crisis task force and recovery programs.

“With this grant money we are going to be able to get a program off the ground in which we are able to exchange data in real time and where our at most risks individuals are,” says Lefebre

Officials say having the ability to assist people dealing with opioid addictions with training will bridge the gap between law enforcement and the community.

“It’s really important that we let them know how easy it is and how accessible the medication is. We need to empower them to use it and know they are not alone,” says Kratz.

Mount Pleasant Police hosts free Narcan trainings the first Wednesday of every month from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Mount Pleasant Town Hall.

Public comment now open for Whipple Trails in Mount Pleasant

MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCSC) - The town of Mount Pleasant wants your input on plans for a new multi-use path between Mathis Ferry Road and Long Point Road.The path is planned for Whipple Road, stretching just over a mile. It’s part of the Mount Pleasant Way project and would run behind the existing sidewalk.The project team wants to know which alignment of the path you prefer and what features you’d like to see along the trail.Operations Division Chief James Aton says the goal of the Whipple Road trails is to ...

MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCSC) - The town of Mount Pleasant wants your input on plans for a new multi-use path between Mathis Ferry Road and Long Point Road.

The path is planned for Whipple Road, stretching just over a mile. It’s part of the Mount Pleasant Way project and would run behind the existing sidewalk.

The project team wants to know which alignment of the path you prefer and what features you’d like to see along the trail.

Operations Division Chief James Aton says the goal of the Whipple Road trails is to bring more connectivity between destinations like Lucy Beckham High School, the town’s tennis facility, Seacoast Church, and adjacent neighborhoods that sit Whipple Road.

Through an online survey and an in-person public meeting on Thursday, Aton says you’ll see three different proposed crosswalks for Whipple Road. You can vote on your preferred option.

You’ll also be asked to rank the amenities you would like to see along the 10 to 12-foot path. These include benches, dog stations, historical markers, workout areas, and a community garden.

“This is really a flagship project for the town, Mount Pleasant Way in this segment in particular,” Aton said. “So, we want to make sure that there’s community buy-in and that’s vested moving forward for other segments as we pursue those as funding becomes available.”

He says concrete and asphalt are the two preferred surfaces for the path. He says concrete is cheaper and less impactful, so that’s what they prefer, but they are open to other recommendations.

Aton says a potential 13-acre park could eventually be built to connect to the trail as well. Those plans are still in the early stages.

Aton says the online survey for the new Whipple Trails is already live on their website.

Thursday night from 5 to 7 p.m. there’s a public meeting to view these plans and ask questions in person. It’s happening at the Jones Center on Egypt Road.

If you can’t make it in person, the online survey is open until January 28. Aton says that’s the deadline for the town to submit its application for Greenbelt funding.

He adds that the town hopes new infrastructure grant programs can help fund the project in addition to Greenbelt Funds.

Aton expects this to be an 18-to-24-month project.

Copyright 2022 WCSC. All rights reserved.

Mount Pleasant businessman denied bail again in child sex-trafficking case

A federal magistrate judge again denied bail for a Mount Pleasant businessman accused of providing money, drugs and clothing to a 17-year-old girl in exchange for sex.Mary Gordon Baker, magistrate judge for the U.S. District Court of South Carolina, ruled Dec. 20 the evidence presented against Earl Dawson Caldwell IV suggests he still posed a danger to the community.The 52-year-old married father of three has remained in custody at the Charleston County jail since his Oct. 11 arrest. A criminal complaint filed the same day in f...

A federal magistrate judge again denied bail for a Mount Pleasant businessman accused of providing money, drugs and clothing to a 17-year-old girl in exchange for sex.

Mary Gordon Baker, magistrate judge for the U.S. District Court of South Carolina, ruled Dec. 20 the evidence presented against Earl Dawson Caldwell IV suggests he still posed a danger to the community.

The 52-year-old married father of three has remained in custody at the Charleston County jail since his Oct. 11 arrest. A criminal complaint filed the same day in federal court accused Caldwell of trafficking a minor for sex between December 2020 and May 2021 in Jasper and Beaufort counties.

A superseding indictment filed Oct. 14 further charged Caldwell with conspiracy to traffic a minor for sex and three counts of sexual exploitation of a child.

Baker denied him bail during an Oct. 15 hearing based on the nature of the charges and weight of evidence against Caldwell, the former president and CEO of the global auditing firm AP Recovery.

Caldwell’s defense team on Dec. 3 entered a motion for the court to reconsider the ruling based on an “unanticipated circumstance” which arose since the initial hearing.

Caldwell had not received any evidence from federal prosecutors since his arrest, despite his defense team making numerous requests. The delays deprived Caldwell of his right to a speedy trial, his lawyers argue in the motion.

The motion requested Caldwell be allowed to live in a Columbia apartment without internet access while he awaits trial. He could be closer to his defense team, which is based in the city.

Caldwell is accused of having sex with the 17-year-old victim on several occasions in South Carolina, including at a $1.2 million residence in Beaufort County that he called “The Plantation.”

Caldwell also allegedly filmed the girl engaging in sexual acts on three occasions, authorities said.

The girl came to the attention of federal authorities in April after she visited a Georgia hospital for appendicitis. While under the effects of anesthesia, the girl revealed she was forced to have sex with 10 to 15 men a day. She was rescued from a hotel a few days later and taken into protective custody, authorities said.

Deborah Barbier, one of Caldwell’s attorneys, argued during the hearing that a great deal of the government’s evidence — received by the defense Dec. 10 — was exculpatory. The alleged victim, as well as her own mother, advertised herself as being older than 18, she said.

Caldwell also never took money from the 17-year-old, instead providing her with funds in hopes she would abandon prostitution, Barbier said. People who engage in sex trafficking are typically motivated by cash.

Both Barbier and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Carra Henderson focused on an alleged text exchange between Caldwell and a pimp, in which the businessman requested another “young girl like (the victim),” Henderson said.

Barbier argued there is a difference between describing someone as a “young girl” and explicitly requesting a minor. Henderson asserted the government had proof Caldwell knew the victim’s real age and still sent the text.

The judge sided with the prosecutor, stating the alleged text showed Caldwell’s inability to control his impulses, she said.

Ultimately, the judge agreed the defense had a right to file the motion requesting Caldwell’s bond be reconsidered in light of the evidence gathered during discovery, but his attorneys were unable to convince her the evidence changed her initial decision.

Caldwell is one of three defendants arrested as part of the Department of Homeland Security’s sex-trafficking investigation.

Cederick Riley, 34, was arrested Aug. 19 on charges of conspiracy to traffic a minor for sex; trafficking a minor for sex; and felony firearm possession. Federal prosecutors claim he served as the 17-year-old girl’s “handler” as she was plied with drugs and coerced into performing sex acts.

Riley pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Jessica Michelle Mills, 29, was arrested Oct. 19 on federal charges of trafficking a minor for sex and conspiracy to traffic a minor for sex. She entered a plea of not guilty.

Mount Pleasant shipping company says mail now or risk late deliveries for Christmas

MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCBD)- The last day to ship through the United States Postal Service for expected delivery by Christmas Day is December 18.Pak Mail in Mount Pleasant says that there are other ways to mail, but customers have to act fast to ensure delivery by Christmas.“Just get in as soon as you can. My computer may tell you something gets there in a day or two. But once it leaves our shop and gets in the carrier’s hands you can see an extra one or two day delay,” said Trey Carden, the store’s co-o...

MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCBD)- The last day to ship through the United States Postal Service for expected delivery by Christmas Day is December 18.

Pak Mail in Mount Pleasant says that there are other ways to mail, but customers have to act fast to ensure delivery by Christmas.

“Just get in as soon as you can. My computer may tell you something gets there in a day or two. But once it leaves our shop and gets in the carrier’s hands you can see an extra one or two day delay,” said Trey Carden, the store’s co-owner.

Carden says that delays have been happening across the country. Some are due to winter weather in the Midwest. Although delays aren’t as severe as they have been according to Carden, he’s seeing the volume of packages rise.

“We aren’t seeing entire terminals being delayed at this point in time,” said Carden. “You know we had our FedEx girl the other day probably pick up 200 packages and normally she’s only picking up 40 to 50.”

Carden says that the busiest shipping day of the year for Pak Mail will be on December 20. Store customers are already seeing lines elsewhere.

“This is the second store I’ve been to because at the last store the line was out the door. I came over here and I’m glad it wasn’t very crowded. It’s getting to be crunch time. Everything is starting to be busy. I think next week it’s going to be lines out the door. Which is great for the business, but tougher for the consumer,” said Joe Good of Mount Pleasant.

Across the parking lot in the the Northcutt Plaza shopping center, clothing store Liam John has seen delays for its products.

“Sometimes places that typically take one day delivery is taking two or two is taking three,” said A.T. Norwood, the general manger of the store. “It becomes frustrating at times because you are paying either extra or the same amount for items to get there at a certain time.”

USPS says that December 23 is the last day to ship Priority Mail Express service, but they say that they cannot guarantee delivery by Christmas Day that late in the week.

“A lot of the postal service options are going to be out of the range for getting them there by Christmas. But we still have plenty of FedEx and UPS options that can make it across the country in time,” said Carden.

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