WHEREAS, the Grand Jury of the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina Orangeburg Division indicted John H. Rickenbacker, Chairman of the Orangeburg County Council, on June 21, 2006, for one count of soliciting and receiving bribes with the intent to be influenced and rewarded in connection with a business transaction involving Orangeburg County and one count of extortion; and
WHEREAS, a certified true copy of the indictment against John H. Rickenbacker has been provided to me; and
WHEREAS, Article VI, Section 8 of the South Carolina Constitution provides that "[a]ny officer of the State or its political subdivisions . . ., who has been indicted by a grand jury for a crime involving moral turpitude or who has waived such indictment if permitted by law may be suspended by the Governor until he shall have been acquitted. . ."; and
WHEREAS, John H. Rickenbacker is an officer of the State or its political subdivisions; and
WHEREAS, the above-referenced indictment is for a crime that involves moral turpitude; and
NOW, THEREFORE, pursuant to the authority vested in me by the Constitution and Statutes of the State of South Carolina, I hereby suspend John H. Rickenbacker from the office he holds on the Orangeburg County Council. This suspension shall remain in effect until such time as he shall be formally acquitted or convicted.
This action in no manner addresses the question of the guilt or innocence of Mr. Rickenbacker and should not be construed as an expression of any opinion one way or another on such question.
This Order shall take effect immediately.
GIVEN UNDER MY HAND AND THE GREAT SEAL OF THE STATE OF SOUTH CAROLINA, THIS 28TH DAY OF JUNE, 2006.
Last Updated: Thursday, July 2, 2009 at 4:10 P.M.