Current Status Introducing Body:
SenateBill Number: 555Ratification Number: 375Act Number: 335Primary Sponsor: PopeType of Legislation: GBSubject: State Grand Jury ActCompanion Bill Number: 3345Date Bill Passed both Bodies: Apr 08, 1992Computer Document Number: CYY/18068.SDGovernor's Action: SDate of Governor's Action: May 04, 1992Introduced Date: Jan 29, 1991Date of Last Amendment: Apr 02, 1992Last History Body: ------Last History Date: May 04, 1992Last History Type: Act No. 335Scope of Legislation: StatewideAll Sponsors: Pope McConnell Patterson Courson Drummond Fielding Giese Gilbert Hayes Helmly Hinds Hinson Holland Leatherman Long Lourie Macaulay Martin Martschink Matthews McGill Mitchell Moore Mullinax O'Dell Passailaigue Peeler Reese Rose Russell Saleeby Setzler J. Verne Smith Nell W. Smith Thomas Waddell Washington WilsonType of Legislation: General Bill
Bill Body Date Action Description CMN ---- ------ ------------ ------------------------------ --- 555 ------ May 04, 1992 Act No. 335 555 ------ May 04, 1992 Signed by Governor 555 ------ Apr 28, 1992 Ratified R 375 555 Senate Apr 08, 1992 Concurred in House amendment, enrolled for ratification 555 House Apr 03, 1992 Read third time, returned to Senate with amendment 555 House Apr 02, 1992 Amended, read second time, unanimous consent for third reading on Friday, April 3, 1992 555 House Mar 31, 1992 Debate adjourned until Thursday, April 2, 1992 555 House Mar 18, 1992 Committee Report: Favorable 25 with amendment 555 House Feb 27, 1992 The House refused to return the Bill to the Senate and a message was sent to the Senate 555 Senate Feb 26, 1992 Requested the House to return the Bill 555 House Feb 26, 1992 Introduced, read first time, 25 referred to Committee 555 Senate Feb 25, 1992 Amended, read third time, sent to House 555 Senate Feb 06, 1992 Made Special Order 555 Senate Jan 28, 1992 Amended, read second time, ordered to third reading with notice of general amendments 555 Senate Jan 22, 1992 Made Special Order 555 Senate May 09, 1991 Committee Report: Favorable 06 with amendment 555 Senate Apr 25, 1991 Committed to Committee, 06 retaining its place on the Calendar 555 Senate Apr 24, 1991 Committee Report: Favorable 11 with amendment 555 Senate Jan 29, 1991 Introduced, read first time, 11 referred to CommitteeView additional legislative information at the LPITS web site.
(A335, R375, S555)
AN ACT TO AMEND ARTICLE 15, CHAPTER 7, TITLE 14, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO THE STATE GRAND JURY SYSTEM, SO AS TO REVISE THE JURISDICTION AND CERTAIN PROCEDURES OF THE SYSTEM.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
Jurisdiction and procedures of state grand jury revised
SECTION 1. Article 15, Chapter 7 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
Section 14-7-1600. This article may be cited as the `State Grand Jury Act', and any state grand jury which may be convened as provided herein to be known as a `State Grand Jury of South Carolina'.
Section 14-7-1610. It is the intent of the General Assembly to enhance the grand jury system and to improve the ability of the State to detect and eliminate criminal activity. The General Assembly recognizes the great importance of having the federal authorities available for certain investigations. The General Assembly finds that crimes involving narcotics, dangerous drugs, or controlled substances, as well as crimes involving obscenity, often transpire or have significance in more than one county of this State. When this occurs, these crimes are most effectively detected and investigated by a grand jury system which has the authority to cross county lines.
The General Assembly further finds that there is a need to enhance the grand jury system to improve the ability of the State to detect and eliminate public corruption. Crimes involving public corruption transpire at times in a single county, but often transpire or have significance in more than one county of this State. The General Assembly believes that a state grand jury, possessing considerably broader investigative authority than individual county grand juries, should be available to investigate public corruption offenses in South Carolina.
The General Assembly further finds that there is a need to enhance the grand jury system to improve the ability of the State to detect and investigate crimes involving the election laws, including, but not limited to, those named offenses as specified in Title 7, or any common law crimes involving the election laws where not superseded, or any crime arising out of or in connection with the election laws, or any attempt, aiding, abetting, solicitation, or conspiracy to commit a crime involving the election laws.
The General Assembly further finds that related criminal activity often arises out of or in connection with crimes involving narcotics, dangerous drugs or controlled substances, obscenity, or public corruption, and that the mechanism for detecting and investigating these related crimes must be improved also.
Accordingly, the General Assembly concludes that a state grand jury should be allowed to investigate certain crimes related to narcotics, dangerous drugs, and obscenity and should also be allowed to investigate crimes involving public corruption and election laws.
Nothing herein limits the authority of a county grand jury, solicitor, or other appropriate law enforcement personnel to investigate, indict, or prosecute offenses within the jurisdiction of the state grand jury.
Section 14-7-1615. For purposes of this article:
(A) the phrase `Attorney General or his designee' also includes:
(1) the Attorney General or his designees;
(2) the Attorney General and his designee or designees.
(B) The term `public corruption' means any unlawful activity, under color of or in connection with any public office or employment, of:
(1) any public official, public member, or public employee, or the agent, servant, assignee, consultant, contractor, vendor, designee, appointee, representative, or any other person of like relationship, by whatever designation known, of any public official, public member, or public employee under color of or in connection with any public office or employment; or
(2) any candidate for public office or the agent, servant, assignee, consultant, contractor, vendor, designee, appointee, representative of, or any other person of like relationship, by whatever name known, of any candidate for public office.
Section 14-7-1620. There is established a state grand jury system, each state grand jury consisting of eighteen persons who shall meet in Columbia or at another suitable place in this State designated by the chief administrative judge of the judicial circuit in which the Attorney General seeks to impanel a state grand jury for a term hereinafter provided. Twelve members of a state grand jury constitute a quorum.
Section 14-7-1630. (A) The jurisdiction of a state grand jury impaneled under this article extends throughout the State. The subject matter jurisdiction of a state grand jury in all cases is limited to the following offenses:
(1) crimes involving narcotics, dangerous drugs, or controlled substances, or any crime arising out of or in connection with a crime involving narcotics, dangerous drugs, or controlled substances, including, but not limited to, money laundering as specified in Section 44-53-475, obstruction of justice, perjury or subornation of perjury, and crimes involving obscenity or any attempt, aiding, abetting, solicitation, or conspiracy to commit any of the aforementioned crimes if the crimes are of a multi-county nature or have transpired or are transpiring or have significance in more than one county of this State; and
(2) any crime, statutory, common law or other, involving public corruption as defined in Section 14-7-1615, any crime, statutory, common law or other, arising out of or in connection with a crime involving public corruption as defined in Section 14-7-1615, and any attempt, aiding, abetting, solicitation, or conspiracy to commit any crime, statutory, common law or other, involving public corruption as defined in Section 14-7-1615; and
(3) crimes involving the election laws, including, but not limited to, those named offenses as specified in Title 7, or any common law crimes involving the election laws where not superseded, or any crime arising out of or in connection with the election laws, or any attempt, aiding, abetting, solicitation, or conspiracy to commit a crime involving the election laws.
(B) Whenever the Attorney General and the Chief of the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division consider it necessary and normal investigative or prosecutorial procedures are not adequate, the Attorney General may petition in writing to the Chief Administrative Judge of the judicial circuit in which he seeks to impanel a state grand jury for an order impaneling a state grand jury. This judge is referred to in this article as the impaneling judge. The petition must allege the type of offenses to be inquired into and, in the case of those offenses contained in subsection (A)(1), must allege that these offenses may be of a multi-county nature or have transpired or are transpiring or have significance in more than one county of the State. The petition in all instances must specify that the public interest is served by the impanelment.
(C) The impaneling judge, after due consideration of the petition, may order the impanelment of a state grand jury in accordance with the petition for a term of twelve calendar months. Upon petition by the Attorney General, the then chief administrative judge of the judicial circuit in which a state grand jury was impaneled, by order, may extend the term of that state grand jury for a period of six months but the term of that state grand jury, including any extension thereof, shall not exceed two years.
(D) The chief administrative judge of the circuit wherein a state grand jury is sitting shall preside over that state grand jury during his tenure as chief administrative judge. The successor chief administrative judge shall assume all duties and responsibilities with regard to any state grand jury impaneled before his term, including, but not limited to, presiding over the state grand jury and ruling on petitions to extend its term. This judge is referred to in this article as the presiding judge.
(E) The presiding judge may discharge a state grand jury prior to the end of its original term or any extension thereof, upon a determination that its business has been completed or upon the request of the Attorney General.
(F) If, at any time within the original term of any state grand jury or any extension thereof, the presiding judge determines that the state grand jury is not conducting investigative activity within its jurisdiction or proper investigative activity, the presiding judge may limit the investigation so that the investigation conforms with the jurisdiction of the state grand jury and existing law or he may discharge the state grand jury. An order issued pursuant to this subsection or under subsection (E) shall not become effective less than ten days after the date on which it is issued and actual notice given to the Attorney General and the foreman of the state grand jury, and may be appealed by the Attorney General to the Supreme Court. If an appeal from the order is made, the state grand jury, except as is otherwise ordered by the Supreme Court, shall continue to exercise its powers pending disposition of the appeal.
Section 14-7-1640. A state grand jury may return indictments irrespective of the county or judicial circuit where the offense is committed or triable. If an indictment is returned, it must be certified and transferred for prosecution to the county where the offense was committed in accordance with Section 14-7-1750. The powers and duties of and the law applicable to county grand juries apply to a state grand jury, except when these are inconsistent with the provisions of this article.
Section 14-7-1650. (A) The Attorney General or his designee shall attend sessions of a state grand jury and shall serve as its legal advisor. The Attorney General or his designee shall examine witnesses, present evidence, and draft indictments and reports upon the direction of a state grand jury.
(B) In all investigations of the crimes specified in Section 14-7-1630, except in matters where the solicitor(s) or his staff are the subject(s) of such investigation, the Attorney General shall consult with the appropriate solicitor(s) of the jurisdiction(s) where the crime or crimes occurred. After consultation, the Attorney General shall determine whether the investigation should be presented to a county grand jury or whether to petition, under Section 14-7-1630(B), for a state grand jury investigation.
(C) Where it is determined that a conflict of interest disqualifies a solicitor or the Attorney General from participation in a state grand jury investigation and prosecution, the following shall apply:
(1) in the case of a solicitor, the Attorney General shall conduct such investigation and prosecution unless the Attorney General and a solicitor not so disqualified concur in the appointment by the Attorney General of the eligible solicitor as a designee of the Attorney General pursuant to Sections 14-7-1650 and 14-7-1750;
(2) in the case of the Attorney General's disqualification, the matter shall be referred to a solicitor for investigation and prosecution.
Any doubt regarding disqualification shall be resolved by the presiding judge of the state grand jury.
Section 14-7-1660. In the January following the effective date of this article and each January thereafter, the jury commissioners for each county shall proceed to draw at random from the jury box the name of one person for each one thousand residents or fraction thereof of the county as determined by the latest United States census but following the effective date of this article, the impaneling judge may authorize an interim procedure for the selection of state grand jurors to constitute the first state grand jury established pursuant to this article. The jury commissioners shall not disqualify or excuse any individual whose name is drawn. When the list is compiled, the clerk of court shall forward the list to the person designated as the clerk of the state grand jury by the impaneling judge. Upon receipt of all the lists from the clerks of court, the clerk of the state grand jury shall draw therefrom at random a list of seven hundred eligible state grand jurors, this list to be known as the master list. The clerk of the state grand jury shall mail to every person whose name is drawn a juror qualification form, the form and the manner of qualifying potential state grand jurors to be determined by the Supreme Court. Based upon these inquiries, the presiding judge shall determine whether an individual is unqualified for, or exempt, or to be excused from jury service. The clerk of the state grand jury shall prepare annually a jury list of persons qualified to serve as state grand jurors, this list to be known as the qualified state grand jury list. No state grand juror may be excused or disqualified except in accordance with existing law.
Upon the impaneling judge ordering a term of a state grand jury on petition of the Attorney General, the clerk of the state grand jury, upon the random drawing of the names of sixty persons from the qualified jury list, shall summon these individuals to attend the jury selection process for the state grand jury. The jury selection process must be conducted by the presiding judge. The clerk of the state grand jury shall issue his writ of venire facias for these persons, requiring their attendance at the time designated. The writ of venire facias must be delivered immediately to the sheriff of the county where the person resides and served as provided by law. From the sixty persons so summoned, a state grand jury for that term of eighteen persons plus four alternates must be drawn in the same manner as jurors are drawn for service on the county grand jury. Nothing in this section may be construed to limit the right of the Attorney General or his designee to request that a potential state grand juror be excused for cause. Jurors of a state grand jury shall receive a daily subsistence expense equal to the maximum allowable for the Columbia, South Carolina area, by regulation of the Internal Revenue Code when summoned or serving, and also must be paid the same per diem and mileage as are members of state boards, commissions, and committees.
Section 14-7-1670. The presiding judge shall appoint one of the jurors to be foreman and another to be deputy foreman. During the absence of the foreman, the deputy foreman shall act as foreman.
Section 14-7-1680. The clerk of the state grand jury, upon the request of the Attorney General or his designee, shall issue subpoenas or subpoenas duces tecum to compel individuals, documents, or other materials to be brought from anywhere in this State to a state grand jury. In addition, a state grand jury may proceed in the same manner as provided by the subpoena rules of the South Carolina Rules of Civil Procedure and Sections 19-9-10 through 19-9-130, except where either is inconsistent with the provisions of this article; provided the subpoena rules of the South Carolina Rules of Civil Procedure and Sections 19-9-10 through 19-9-130 are not considered a limitation upon this section, but supplemental thereto. The subpoenas and subpoenas duces tecum may be for investigative purposes and for the retention of documents or other materials so subpoenaed for proper criminal proceedings. Any law enforcement officer with appropriate jurisdiction is empowered to serve these subpoenas and subpoenas duces tecum and receive these documents and other materials for return to a state grand jury. Any person violating a subpoena or subpoena duces tecum issued pursuant to this article, or who fails to fully answer all questions put to him before proceedings of a state grand jury where the response thereto is not privileged or otherwise protected by law, including the granting of immunity as authorized by Section 14-7-1760, may be punished by the presiding judge for contempt. To this end, where the violation or failure to answer is alleged to have occurred, the Attorney General or his designee may petition the presiding judge to compel compliance by the person alleged to have committed the violation or who has failed to answer. If the presiding judge considers compliance is warranted, he may order this compliance and may punish the individual for contempt where the compliance does not occur.
The clerk of the state grand jury also may issue subpoenas and subpoenas duces tecum to compel individuals, documents, or other materials to be brought from anywhere in this State to the trial of any indictment returned by a state grand jury or the trial of any civil forfeiture action arising out of an investigation conducted by a state grand jury.
Section 14-7-1690. Once a state grand jury has entered into a term, the petition and order establishing same may be amended as often as necessary and appropriate so as to expand the areas of inquiry authorized by the order or to add additional areas of inquiry thereto. The procedures for amending this authority are the same as those for filing the original petition and order.
Section 14-7-1700. A court reporter shall record, either stenographically or by use of an electronic recording device, all proceedings except when a state grand jury is deliberating or voting. Subject to the limitations of Section 14-7-1720(A) and (D) and Rule 5, South Carolina Rules of Criminal Procedure, a defendant has the right to review and to reproduce the stenographically or electronically recorded materials. Transcripts of the recorded testimony or proceedings must be made when requested by the Attorney General or his designee. Subject to the limitations of Section 14-7-1720(A) and (D) and Rule 5, South Carolina Rules of Criminal Procedure, a copy of the transcript of the recorded testimony or proceedings requested by the Attorney General or his designee shall be provided to the defendant by the court reporter, upon request, at the transcript rate established by the Office of Court Administration. An unintentional failure of any recording to reproduce all or any portion of the testimony or proceedings does not affect the validity of the prosecution. The recording or reporter's notes or any transcript prepared therefrom and all books, papers, records, correspondence, or other documents produced before a state grand jury must remain in the custody and control of the Attorney General or his designee unless otherwise ordered by the court in a particular case.
Section 14-7-1710. The foreman shall administer an oath or affirmation in the manner prescribed by law to any witness who testifies before a state grand jury.
Section 14-7-1720. (A) State grand jury proceedings are secret, and a state grand juror shall not disclose the nature or substance of the deliberations or vote of the state grand jury. The only persons who may be present in the state grand jury room when a state grand jury is in session, except for deliberations and voting, are the state grand jurors, the Attorney General or his designee, the court reporter, an interpreter if necessary, and the witness testifying. A state grand juror, the Attorney General or his designee, any interpreter used, the court reporter, and any person to whom disclosure is made pursuant to subsection (B)(2) of this section may not disclose the testimony of a witness examined before a state grand jury or other evidence received by it except when directed by a court for the purpose of:
(1) ascertaining whether it is consistent with the testimony given by the witness before the court in any subsequent criminal proceeding;
(2) determining whether the witness is guilty of perjury;
(3) assisting local, state, other state or federal law enforcement or investigating agencies, including another grand jury, in investigating crimes under their investigative jurisdiction;
(4) providing the defendant the materials to which he is entitled pursuant to Section 14-7-1700;
(5) complying with constitutional, statutory, or other legal requirements or to further justice.
If the court orders disclosure of matters occurring before a state grand jury, the disclosure must be made in that manner, at that time, and under those conditions as the court directs.
(B) In addition, disclosure of testimony of a witness examined before a state grand jury or other evidence received by it may be made without being directed by a court to:
(1) the Attorney General or his designee for use in the performance of their duties; and
(2) those governmental personnel, including personnel of the State or its political subdivisions, as are considered necessary by the Attorney General or his designee to assist in the performance of their duties to enforce the criminal laws of the State; provided that any person to whom matters are disclosed under this item (2) shall not utilize that state grand jury material for purposes other than assisting the Attorney General or his designee in the performance of their duties to enforce the criminal laws of the State. The Attorney General or his designee promptly shall provide the presiding judge before whom was impaneled the state grand jury whose material has been disclosed, the names of the persons to whom the disclosure has been made, and shall certify that he has advised these persons of their obligation of secrecy under this section.
(C) Nothing in this section affects the attorney-client relationship. A client has the right to communicate to his attorney any testimony given by the client to a state grand jury, any matters involving the client discussed in the client's presence before a state grand jury, and evidence involving the client received by or proffered to a state grand jury in the client's presence.
(D) Any person violating the provisions of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be punished by a fine not exceeding five thousand dollars or by a term of imprisonment not exceeding one year, or both.
(E) State grand jurors, the Attorney General or his designee, the court reporter, any interpreter used, and the clerk of the state grand jury must be sworn to secrecy and also may be punished for criminal contempt for violations of this section.
Section 14-7-1730. Except for the prosecution of cases arising from indictments issued by the state grand jury, the presiding judge has jurisdiction to hear all matters arising from the proceedings of a state grand jury, including, but not limited to, matters relating to the impanelment or removal of state grand jurors, the quashing of subpoenas, the punishment for contempt, and the matter of bail for persons indicted by a state grand jury.
Section 14-7-1740. The Attorney General or his designee shall coordinate the scheduling of activities of any state grand jury.
Section 14-7-1750. In order to return a `true bill' of indictment, twelve or more state grand jurors must find that probable cause exists for the indictment and vote in favor of it. Upon indictment by a state grand jury, the indictment must be returned to the presiding judge. If the presiding judge considers the indictment to be within the authority of the state grand jury and otherwise in accordance with the provisions of this article, he shall return the indictment by order to the county where venue is appropriate under South Carolina law for prosecution by the Attorney General or his designee. The presiding judge may direct that the indictment be kept secret until the defendant is in custody or has been released pending trial. Thereupon, the clerk of the state grand jury shall seal the indictment, and no person shall disclose the return of the indictment except when necessary for the issuance and execution of a warrant.
Section 14-7-1760. If any person asks to be excused from testifying before a state grand jury or from producing any books, papers, records, correspondence, or other documents before a state grand jury on the ground that the testimony or evidence required of him may tend to incriminate him or subject him to any penalty or forfeiture and is notwithstanding directed by the presiding judge to give the testimony or produce the evidence, he must comply with this direction, but no testimony so given or other information produced, or any information directly or indirectly derived from such testimony or such other information, may be received against him in any criminal action, criminal investigation, or criminal proceeding. No individual testifying or producing evidence or documents is exempt from prosecution or punishment for any perjury committed by him while so testifying, and the testimony or evidence given or produced is admissible against him upon any criminal action, criminal investigation, or criminal proceeding concerning this perjury; provided that any individual may execute, acknowledge, and file a statement with the appropriate court expressly waiving immunity or privilege in respect to any testimony or evidence given or produced and thereupon the testimony or evidence given or produced may be received or produced before any judge or justice, court, tribunal, grand jury, or otherwise, and if so received or produced, the individual is not entitled to any immunity or privilege on account of any testimony he may give or evidence produced.
Section 14-7-1770. Records, orders, and subpoenas relating to state grand jury proceedings must be kept under seal to the extent and for that time as is necessary to prevent disclosure of matters occurring before a state grand jury.
Section 14-7-1780. The Attorney General shall make available suitable space for state grand juries to meet. The State Law Enforcement Division also shall provide service as the state grand juries require. The other costs associated with the state grand jury system, including juror per diem, mileage, and subsistence must be paid from funds appropriated to the Attorney General's office for this purpose by the General Assembly in the annual general appropriations act. Nothing herein authorizes the Attorney General to expend general funds above the level of appropriations authorized annually in the general appropriations act or acts supplemental thereto.
Section 14-7-1790. A state grand jury, whenever it considers necessary, may employ experts to assist it and fix the amount of compensation or per diem to be paid therefor, upon the approval of the presiding judge as to the amount being given before any expert is employed and upon appropriation of sufficient funds therefor by the General Assembly as provided in Section 14-7-1780.
Section 14-7-1800. The Supreme Court may promulgate rules as are necessary for the operation of the state grand jury system established herein.
Section 14-7-1810. If any part of this article is declared invalid, unenforceable, or unconstitutional by a court of competent jurisdiction, it is hereby declared severable from the remaining portions of this article which portions shall remain in full force and effect as if the invalid, unenforceable, or unconstitutional portion were omitted.
Section 14-7-1820. This article applies to offenses committed both before and after its effective date."
SECTION 2. The expanded jurisdiction of the state grand jury system applies to offenses committed both before and after the effective date of this act.
SECTION 3. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.
Approved the 4th day of May, 1992.