Calhoun Falls Councilman Charlie Tillman, left, sits with defense attorney Rauch Wise and listens to testimony during the opening day of his trial Tuesday at the Abbeville County Courthouse. (MATT BRUCE | INDEX-JOURNAL)
Calhoun Falls Councilman Charlie Tillman, left, sits with defense attorney Rauch Wise and listens to testimony during the opening day of his trial Tuesday at the Abbeville County Courthouse. (MATT BRUCE | INDEX-JOURNAL)
6/25/2014 11:30 PM

Calhoun Falls town councilman Charlie Tillman brought his own trial to a close today by entering Alford pleas to two charges stemming from his April 2012 DUI arrest.
Tillman pleaded to charges of DUI and threatening the life of a public official. He was sentenced to five years in prison, suspended to one year of probation and 48 hours of community service.
Tillman will have to resign from council because of his felony conviction on threatening a public official’s life.



6/25/2014 12:21 AM

ABBEVILLE -- The trial of embattled Calhoun Falls Councilman Charlie Tillman officially began Tuesday as jurors heard the first day of testimony in the case.
Tillman, 58, was arrested early the morning of April 16, 2012 following a traffic stop in the parking lot of his residence on Main Street in Calhoun Falls. He was charged with driving under the influence, failure to stop for a blue light, transportation of alcohol in a motor vehicle with a broken seal, and threatening the life of a public official in connection with the arrest. Tillman faces eight years behind bars if he’s convicted on all four indictments. The highly publicized encounter garnered news headlines across the state as, according to records, the first-term councilman threatened to, “burn this (expletive) town down…”


Attorneys for both sides gave opening arguments to begin the day. The South Carolina Attorney General’s office is prosecuting the case for the state. Assistant AG Ashley McMahan led off the day, comparing the ordeal to real-life theater.

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