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Former SC legislator must pay $2,000 fine to settle harassment allegations

Former SC state Rep. Edward Southard
Former SC state Rep. Edward Southard

Former state Rep. Edward Southard must pay a $2,000 fine as part of a settlement with the S.C. House Ethics Committee that was investigating allegations of inappropriate behavior by the Berkeley Republican.

The committee last month decided to continue a public investigation of Southard. It also released redacted reports detailing allegations of inappropriate behavior by Southard toward two House pages and a lobbyist.

Southard’s behavior was directed at African-American females who perceived the attention as inappropriate, according to an investigation by the Fisher and Philips law firm of Columbia.

Southard did not admit to or contest the allegations, according to the settlement.

Southard resigned from the House in April. He recently withdrew from the November general election for the District 100 seat he had held.

Cassie Cope: 803-771-8657, @cassielcope

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