Crime & Public Safety

Update: Yemassee councilman was on motorcycle when arrested for DUI in Beaufort County

A Yemassee town councilman was arrested early Thursday morning in northern Beaufort County for DUI after hit speeds of more than 80 mph on his motorcycle, according to a Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office report.

A deputy pulled Charlie Simmons, 34, over around 2:30 a.m. at a gas station near Bruce K. Smalls Drive and Trask Parkway in Grays Hill, the report said.

Simmons had the smell of alcohol on his breath, the deputy wrote, and was arrested after failing the sobriety test.

Charlie Simmons.jpg
Charlie Simmons Beaufort County Detention Center

His motorcycle was towed from the scene and Simmons was booked into the jail at 4:19 a.m. and released before noon, according to the Beaufort County Detention Center jail log.

Details on his bond were not immediately available in Beaufort County court records Friday morning.

Simmons is currently serving his first term on council, Yemassee town clerk Matt Garnes confirmed Thursday. Simmons’ term began in November 2017 and his seat will be up for re-election in November 2021.

Yemassee officials declined to comment, deferring questions about the arrest to the Sheriff’s Office.

The Island Packet and Beaufort Gazette newspapers do not typically name those charged with misdemeanor crimes but are doing so in this case because Simmons holds a position of public trust.

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Lana Ferguson has reported on a smorgasbord of news for The Island Packet & Beaufort Gazette since June 2018. Before coming to the Lowcountry, she worked for publications in her home state of Virginia and graduated from the University of Mississippi, where she was editor of the college’s daily newspaper.
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