A cemetery sex scandal involving a top lieutenant to S.C. Attorney General Henry McMaster deepened Tuesday, as both the City of Columbia and the Attorney General’s office appear to have been involved in a coordinated effort to cover-up the incident.
First, and most damaging, it was revealed that the Columbia police officer who apprehended Assistant Deputy Attorney General Roland S. Corning on suspicion of solicitation – and then let him go without being charged – is married to one of Corning’s co-workers in the Attorney General’s office.
Officer Mike Wines, who busted Corning with a prostitute in Columbia’s Elmwood Cemetery Monday afternoon, is married to Megan Wines – who works with Corning in McMaster’s office.
In fact, after apprehending Corning – a former State Representative and Workers’ Compensation Commissioner – sources tell FITS that Officer Wines called his wife, who consulted with her superiors at the Attorney General’s office and relayed word that their desire was for Corning to be released.
Obviously, that’s what happened, as neither Corning nor the prostitute were arrested despite the fact that after being caught they initially attempted to flee apprehension. In fact, charges still have yet to be filed in the case.
Also, Wines’ police report on the incident – which the City of Columbia told FITS late Tuesday afternoon did not exist – mysteriously came into existence after our story was published. That report was then provided to another media outlet for it’s Wednesday editions.
Indeed, the salacious details of the “Cemetery Sexcapades” scandal – first reported here on FITS yesterday – have since been confirmed by The State newspaper based almost exclusively on that police report.
You can click here to read The State’s article.
City officials did not immediately return FITS calls seeking comment as to the discrepancy, and a day later, McMaster’s office is still refusing to comment on either the incident or the alleged cover-up.
We were informed yesterday, however, that McMaster’s staff was “working feverishly behind the scenes” to suppress the incident, which may explain not only why Corning was let go – but also why no report was made available to us when we requested it.
In addition to documenting the fact that Corning “attempted to make a hasty retreat, spinning the tires in the driveway and accelerating rapidly” away from the officer, the incident report obtained by The State also reveals that Corning – who is married – had a sex enhancement drug and sex toys in his vehicle.
After being apprehended, Corning flashed his Attorney General’s badge – a gold, law enforcement badge that McMaster hands out to the attorneys and political operatives who work in his office.
Corning’s “Cemetery Sexcapades” scandal is a huge embarrassment for McMaster, who has staked out a high profile for himself (and his gubernatorial campaign) when it comes to cracking down on online prostitution – an effort that has met with little success, incidentally.
Of course, the incident itself isn’t the issue any more – it’s the compelling evidence pointing to a coordinated cover-up.
Finally, for those of you who repeatedly criticize FITS for using anonymous sources, this incident was brought to light thanks to two anonymous emails to our website on Tuesday – accounts we were later able to confirm with our network of sources.