Citation lifted with sheriff’s approval
by Ron Gregory
LOGAN — A traffic citation coincidentally issued after an altercation occurred near the corner of Logan’s Dingess and Stratton streets was withdrawn the same day it was issued by the Logan Sheriff’s Department, according to court records.
Social media comments had already confirmed that Christopher Leon Stratton, 45, of Stollings received the citation. Efforts by the Corridor Chronicle to obtain copies of the citation were stymied Friday, June 2, the day the ticket was issued. As of 2 p.m., the citation had not appeared in magistrate court although witnesses said it was issued at about 11:30 a.m. A spokeswoman in the sheriff’s office said at 2 p.m. that Sheriff Sonya Dingess-Porter had “probably issued the citation.” She said Porter was out of the office but would call the reporter regarding the ticket. As of press time, Dingess had still not called.
Stratton himself posted on Facebook that he received a citation and added that Sheriff Porter hugged him before leaving the scene. Stratton was at the location because of an altercation between him, Logan Code Enforcement Officer Ray Perry and Perry’s wife, Donna. While the incident was perhaps witnessed by the sheriff, she did not respond until notified of what was happening by the Perrys. According to witnesses, the sheriff was stopped at the traffic light when the Porters stopped behind her with Stratton next. Apparently, Ray Perry, who has been the recipient of constant social media criticism by Stratton, got out of his county vehicle and walked back to ask why Stratton was videotaping or taking photos of him.
An argument apparently followed with Donna Perry videotaping. The video appears to show Stratton slapping the camera and hand of Donna Perry while uttering several curse words. It was apparently then that Ray Perry approached Porter, still sitting at the light, and made her aware of what was happening.
The Perrys subsequently complained to a state trooper who they say told them Stratton was “within his rights” for slapping the hand and camera “out of his face.” Later, the Porters obtained Temporary Personal Safety Orders (TPSO) for Stratton, who has continued his verbal barrage against them although the TPSO appears to prohibit such behavior. A hearing on a permanent safety order is scheduled in a week.
Although Porter has yet to comment, the citation actually showed up in magistrate court late Friday afternoon. On it, Stratton was accused of driving a car owned by Violet Adkins of Murrells Inlet, South Carolina, with a suspended license. A document presented at the same time shows that, on June 2, Stratton paid $150 to the state Division of Motor Vehicles to reinstate his driver’s license. The fee for one reinstatement is $50, so the receipt shows Stratton paid for three separate reinstatements, meaning he apparently had received three tickets for the same offense.
Those papers were accompanied by a motion signed off on by the Logan Prosecutor’s office, R.T. Goudy, requesting that the traffic citation in Logan be dismissed. The letter notes, “Suspension lifted on June 2, 2017. Sheriff Porter informed defendant that she had no objection.”
According to the motion filed by the prosecutor, “Unless objection is made within ten days of delivery of this notice, the court will consider the motion and dismiss the citation if, under the circumstances, it is the most just disposition of the matter. If timely objection is made, the court will take no further action on the motion to dismiss and the case will proceed to hearing or trial.”
The motion is pending before Magistrate Dwight Williamson.