MCCOLL, SC (WMBF) – Two brothers have been arrested for allegedly offering crack cocaine, beer, and cash to citizens in April to vote for McColl mayoral candidate Bobby Odom in the May 12 election, according to documents from the State Law Enforcement Division.
William White and Bobby Ray White were arrested by SLED and charged with conspiracy and procuring or offering to procure votes by bribery, according to arrest warrants.
An affidavit from Marlboro County alleges that the Whites conspired to pay voters in the Town of McColl to vote for mayoral candidate Bobby Odom and several Town Council seats.
Another affidavit states that on April 13, William White offered to pay $20 and one 12-ounce Bud Light to a registered voter in exchange for a vote for Odom. The vote was tendered at the Marlboro County Election Commission, and witnessed by Bobby Ray White.
Bobby Ray White is also accused of transporting a voter from McColl to the Marlboro County Election Commission for absentee voting on April 25. He then gave the voter a piece of crack cocaine in return for a vote for Odom, the affidavit states.
According to the Marlboro County Election Commission, Odom won the mayoral election for the Town of McColl on May 12 with 348 votes, a total of 45.2 percent of the votes cast. Robert Outlaw received 293 votes, or 37.9 percent, and Rick Peterkin received 16.95 percent of vote – 131 votes total.
Laurie Moses, the Director of the Marlboro County Election Commission, said she was not sure if these allegations would change the results of the May election, or prompt a new election, adding, "It's an ongoing investigation, we're just waiting to hear what SLED had to say."
Moses said that she did meet the White brothers when they brought voters in to the election commission for absentee voting, adding that giving voters rides is not an uncommon practice.
"We don't like for this to happen, but it's out of our control," Moses said. "We want to make sure everyone has a fair election, that's what we work for."
Seven candidates were in the running for six McColl Town Council seats – those seats went to the six candidates with the most votes: Van Carlisle, R.C. Cummings, Willie Goins, Ray Grier, Michelle Odom, and Lisa Dawn Price.