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1 dead, 1 injured in apparent carbon monoxide poisoning in Holly Hill

A 43-year-old man is dead and a woman is undergoing treatment after an apparent carbon monoxide poisoning incident in Holly Hill on Tuesday morning.

Holly Hill Police Chief Josh Detter said the injured woman called dispatchers at 6:50 a.m. from a camper that was parked behind a residence at 2805 Eutaw Road, at the intersection of Peake Street.

Detter said when the woman called, “It was just her yelling, I don’t think there was any sort of words said necessarily. I guess dispatch was able to ping or GPS her location.”

Detter said the initial officer on the scene arrived and found the woman, “fading in and out of consciousness.”

At some point the woman “moved and pulled the blankets or some clothing or something and then they were able to see there was a male laying in the bed as well,” Detter said.

The man was deceased.

“It is believed that he succumbed to carbon monoxide poisoning,” Detter said.

Officers also noticed several animals inside of the camper, including a deceased long-haired Chihuahua type of dog.

“There is a bulldog or pit bull of some sort,” Detter said. “She was OK and I got her out.”

“There’s a cat in there that’s as skittish as can be and there’s a possum in there that weighs 25 pounds,” Detter said. He noted that the possum was in a cage and named Snoopy.

The possum, cat and bulldog survived and have since been left with the property owner, Detter said.

Detter said, “The preliminary determination we made was after I got there, I went inside because I could hear an engine and I opened the bathroom door and discovered there was a generator to power the heater to keep the camper warm.”

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, “Generators should be used outdoors only, far from windows, doors and vents. The carbon monoxide produced by one generator is equal to the carbon monoxide produced by hundreds of running cars. It can incapacitate and kill consumers within minutes.”

Orangeburg County Animal Control responded to the scene and removed the deceased small dog.

The Orangeburg County Coroner’s Office did not immediately return phone calls on Tuesday.

The incident remains under investigation.

Longest-serving member: Cobb-Hunter swears in new representatives

Rep. Gilda Cobb-Hunter, D-Orangeburg, presided over the South Carolina House on Tuesday as the body’s longest-serving member.

The newly elected representatives gathered to organize for the 2019-2020 year.

During the session, the members re-elected Rep. Jay Lucas, R-Hartsville, as speaker of the House. He has led the House since 2014.

At the beginning of every new legislative session, tradition dictates that the member who is the longest tenured will preside over the first post-election session.

Cobb-Hunter, a member of the House since 1992, swore in the new members.

“Her seniority in the House is historic for our community,” said Rep. Wendy Brawley, D-Hopkins. This is the first time that an African-American member has been the longest-tenured representative in South Carolina, with Cobb-Hunter’s 27th year beginning in January.

Adding to her long list of accomplishments, Cobb-Hunter has recently been elected as the 13th president to the National Black Caucus of State Legislators.

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‘Survivor’ star meeting fans; show an invigorating experience, says Orangeburg native

Orangeburg native Davie Rickenbacker is excited about being a cast member on the CBS series “Survivor,” but he is even more thrilled about an upcoming watch party he plans to hold with family and friends for an episode of the long-running reality show.

A new episode of "Survivor: David vs. Goliath: Season 37" premieres at 8 p.m. tonight.

Rickenbacker said he will be holding a watch party from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Wednesday at Wild Wings located in Columbia's Vista.

"I've been having watch parties throughout the season. I've had one in Orangeburg, actually, but I wasn't able to attend because I was also having one in Atlanta. And I've had a few more in Atlanta and one in Alabama, where I have my degree from," Rickenbacker said.

"So I felt it was important for me to come back to South Carolina and be at a watch party so that I can show everyone my South Carolina pride, my love for the state and, you know, just have the support of all of my friends and family in one room," he said.

He added, "I'll be happy to take any pictures and sign any autographs, but the show will actually begin at 8 o'clock."

Rickenbacker said being on “Survivor” has been an invigorating experience. The reality show is a bit different from others he's seen on television.

"Reality TV is something that I've always been a fan of, but 'Survivor' more in a sense because it's not like those other reality TV shows with all of the bickering and the fighting," he said.

This season's theme is an intriguing one in that some contestants may start off "from the bottom," or may have come from little, but in the end come out as strong as Goliath himself, Rickenbacker said.

"We've learned so much about ourselves that we end up becoming Goliath in the end," he said.

Davie is the son of John and Hazel Rickenbacker.

The final episode of “Survivor" will air at 8 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 19, on CBS.


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Driver mistakes gunman for deer; kidnapper forces man on ride around Orangeburg

A driver stopped his vehicle in the road for what he thought was a deer. It turned out to be a man with a gun, according to an Orangeburg County Sheriff’s Office incident report.

The 28-year-old driver called deputies at 10:46 p.m. Monday to report the ordeal.

He said he was driving near the 1200 block of Five Chop Road around 10 p.m. when he thought he saw a deer trying to cross the road. He stopped his vehicle in the road.

When the man looked to his left, he saw a black male with a gray beard and a bald head. He was wearing a black T-shirt and blue jeans.

The driver said the man opened his front passenger door and pointed a black gun at him, he told deputies.

When the man entered the vehicle, he ordered the driver to travel down various roads.

The driver remembered passing the 40/40 club and Fred’s, he said.

The man kept ordering him to make turns, the driver told deputies.

At one point, they turned down a dark road.

That’s when the kidnapper said to the driver, “You know this is a road where a lot of people die at,” the report said.

The driver said he didn’t respond to the man’s statement.

He said the man became upset and “got into his face,” the report states.

The man then asked the driver, “Do you want to die?”

The driver said he didn’t respond to the man, who then became even more upset.

The man ordered the driver to steer into a cornfield where the vehicle bogged in the mud.

When the vehicle became stuck, the man yelled, “D - - - !” and then took off running down the street, the driver said.