COLUMBIA — A well-known television and radio personality was arrested at the S.C. State Fair on Wednesday.
Cynthia Pryor Hardy, 54, was charged with possession of marijuana after she was stopped by a metal detector at the entrance to the fair’s north entrance. Richland County Sheriff’s deputies found a cigar case containing a “partially burned blunt and a rolled up blunt” with approximately 2 grams of marijuana, according to a release from the Richland County Sheriff’s Department.
Hardy was at the fair to tape an independent talk show that airs on WACH-TV. She was issued a citation and, at the request of fair officials, escorted off the property.
OnPoint!, Hardy’s weekly TV program on WACH-Fox, airs at 9:30 a.m. each Sunday. Hardy, who was at the fair to discuss Social Security and healthcare issues with the AARP in front of a live audience for a WACH program, said she would battle the charge.
“As you all know, I have been very outspoken on my radio show OnPoint with Cynthia Hardy about drug use and its effects on our communities,” said Hardy in a statement. “I do not condone marijuana usage. I regret the misunderstanding and unfortunate turn of events at the SC State Fair. I ask for your support during this time as I look forward to my day in court.”
Jim Bleicher, president at CEO at WACH-TV, said he met with Hardy on Thursday aftermoon and that their relationship remained “strong.” Hardy does not work for the station, but the two has had a partnership for several years. WACH provides the air-time for free as part of its public affairs programming, production and a co-host for Hardy’s weekly program. No money changes hands, Bleicher said.
“I’d like to see this play out,” Bleicher said the investigation. “She’s like family as far as I’m concerned.”
Sgt. Curtis Wilson with the Richland County Sheriff’s Department said his department decided to send out a news release on the arrest because of the high scrutiny of the S.C. State Fair. Wilson said the release was to inform the public that “guns, drugs, fights... and other silliness would not be tolerated.”