Former Horry County police officer jailed again, denied bond

troot@thesunnews.comMay 14, 2013 

Charles Kenneth McLendon

— A former Horry County police officer has returned to jail, accused of violating a protection order sought by his estranged wife after a December incident that occurred while he was on duty.

Charles Kenneth McLendon, 42, who now lists a Florence address, was denied bond Tuesday morning by Magistrate Chris Arakas. McLendon was booked into J. Reuben Long Detention Center at 5:44 p.m. Monday on a charge of violation of protection order.

McLendon was indicted last month by an Horry County grand jury on a charge of misconduct in office in connection with the Dec. 3 incident, which occurred when he was employed as an Horry County police corporal.

McLendon was arrested on the charge and a first-offense criminal domestic violence charge on Dec. 3 and released later that day on $6,000 bail. He had been free on bail until Tuesday.

McLendon’s attorney, Fran Humphries, asked for a reasonable bond Tuesday morning.

“Chuck understands passing by the residence is a violation of the order,” Humphries said. “Even when the victim is not home.” McLendon’s estranged wife spoke to Arakas via a video teleconferencing system at the detention center Tuesday and told him she feared for her safety because the “events are escalating with him. . . . He knows the law.”

The victim was not visible to the courtroom attendees and appeared on a computer screen at Arakas’ bench.

Arakas told McLendon he had concern for the victim’s safety as well as McLendon’s safety, so he denied his request for bond.

Horry County officials fired McLendon from his position with Horry County police on Dec. 3 when he was arrested. McLendon had been employed with the department since May 11, 1999.

If convicted, McLendon faces up to 10 years in prison on the misconduct charge and up to 30 days on the criminal domestic violence charge, 15th Circuit Solicitor Jimmy Richardson said at the time of McLendon’s arrest.

The misconduct in office charge is related to McLendon’s alleged use of Horry County equipment and being on duty at the time of the incident, according to an arrest affidavit.

According to an Horry County police report, the incident occurred between 12:30 a.m. and 2 a.m. Dec. 3.

Officers were called to a home on Whaler Harbour in the Myrtle Beach area for a domestic situation and found McLendon “agitated and the house showed obvious signs of aggressive behavior,” according to the report. Officers handcuffed McLendon and took him outside while they spoke to a 46-year-old woman, who said the couple has been separated.

The victim told police that a male friend brought her home and McLendon drove by and got angry about the male friend being there, according to the report.

The victim said McLendon yelled over his police vehicle’s public address system that he was going to kill himself and then drove away.

The victim said she left the home and soon after she noticed McLendon following her in his police vehicle.

McLendon got on the PA system and told her to pull over, but she refused, according to the incident report. The victim said McLendon then turned on the emergency equipment in his patrol car, drove by her and forced her to stop in the road.

She said McLendon got out of his vehicle with his gun drawn and walked up to her car, according to the report. McLendon threw his wedding band inside her vehicle and took the gun’s magazine clip out and threw it inside as well, police said.

McLendon told her he had one bullet left to do what he needed, then drove away, according to the report. She told police she returned to the home and found McLendon there, two doors broken off hinges, and her bedroom ransacked.

The couple then argued and the victim said she hit McLendon before he grabbed her, pinned her to the ground and put her in a choke hold, according to the report. She repeatedly hit McLendon with an air freshener can until he let her go.

McLendon then called an Horry County police sergeant and asked for an officer to be sent to the home, according to the report. McLendon was taken to Conway Medical Center for evaluation before he was taken to jail.

The victim told officers she feared for her safety during the incident. She did not require EMS treatment, according to police. McLendon had minor scratches on his face, neck and head but did not require any medical treatment.

Contact TONYA ROOT at 444-1723 or follow her at Twitter.com/tonyaroot.

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