Suspended Florence Sheriff Kenney Boone no longer under house arrest
COLUMBIA, S.C. – Florence County Sheriff Kenney Boone is no longer under house arrest but will remain subjected to electronic monitoring.
Boone has been suspended after being indicted on two charges of embezzlement and one charge of misconduct in office.
Deputy Attorney General Heather Weiss consented Wednesday afternoon for the removal of house arrest, leading Judge DeAndrea Benjamin to remove it as a condition of Boone’s bond.
Robert Bolchoz, Boone’s attorney, argued that Boone has obligations related to his wife’s children in family court and needs the house arrest to be removed to facilitate the opportunity to find a job.
Benjamin decided that Boone would remain under electronic monitoring and reminded Boone that he remains under an order to have no contact with the sheriff’s office. She added that at Boone’s next court date, if there are no complaints from witnesses or the attorney general’s office, she could decide to remove the monitor then.
Boone’s attorneys, Bolchoz and Butch Bowers of Columbia, filed a motion for Benjamin to reconsider Boone’s bond regarding house arrest and GPS monitoring, leading to Wednesday’s hearing in Columbia.
On April 24, Benjamin set Boone’s bail as a $50,000 personal recognizance bond with electronic monitoring and a no-contact order regarding the Florence County Sheriff’s Office. Boone also was placed on home confinement. Benjamin said at the hearing that Boone and his attorney, once he retained one, could revisit the issue of electronic monitoring.
During the hearing on April 24, Boone asked why the state attorney general’s office felt electronic monitoring was necessary.
Weiss said information that led to Boone’s indictment and arrest had come from within the sheriff’s office, and there was some fear of retaliation.
Boone, the sheriff of Florence County since he was elected in2004, was arrested earlier on April 24 after state Attorney General Alan Wilson’s office announced Boone had been indicted by the state grand jury on three charges: two counts of embezzlement and one count of common-law misconduct while in office.
The embezzlement offenses are statutory felonies punishable by up to five years in prison each and a fine at the discretion of the court. The misconduct offense is a common-law misdemeanor, punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
Also on April 24, Boone was suspended by Gov. Henry McMaster pending the outcome of the case. W.C. “Billy” Barnes was appointed interim sheriff by the governor.