CITY COUNCILMAN, LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICIAL SAYS HE MADE THE WHOLE THING UP
Danny Frazier – the Lexington, S.C. city councilman and part-time county sheriff’s employee who is at the center of an alleged video poker ring – is finally talking.
The man who appears on hours of audio tape implicating numerous Palmetto political and law enforcement officials in the illegal operation put out a statement this week claiming the whole thing is merely “boasting” on his part.
“At the request of someone I thought to be a friend seeking advice about getting involved in a new business venture, I met with him,” Frazier says in a statement responding to the allegations. ”Secretly, and without my knowledge, he taped our entire conversation.”
Numerous area politicians were named on the tapes – including Columbia, S.C. Mayor Steve Benjamin and State Senators Jakie Knotts and Ronnie Cromer.
“All them son-of-a-bitches that stay pretty and clean up there, the only reason they stay pretty and clean is because I do their dirty work for their ass,” Frazier says on the tape.
Now he’s totally backing down on that claim.
“During the course of that lengthy conversation, I boasted about friendships and said things that were exaggerated or simply not true, which reflected very poor judgment on my part,” Frazier continues. “I guess we all like to think we are more important or influential that (sic) we actually are.”
Previously, Frazier told WIS TV 10 (NBC – Columbia, S.C.) that he didn’t recall making any of the comments on the tape.
The existence of the so-called “Lexington Ring” was first teased two weeks ago by The (Columbia, S.C.) Free Times - although the publication has reportedly destroyed much of the evidence it was provided with and doesn’t appear to have any plans to follow up on its initial report.
This website followed up on the Free Times report, though – and has since published a pair of original reports on the alleged ring (click here and here). Meanwhile, WIS TV is currently scheduled to air its report on the saga later this week.
Video poker machines were outlawed in 2000 when the S.C. Supreme Court blocked a referendum that would have given Palmetto State residents the right to vote on their legality. We disagree with that decision (voters should have been allowed to make that call), and we have been consistent in supporting the expansion of gaming in South Carolina and opposing the state-run gambling monopoly (a.k.a. the so-called “education” lottery).
So … what’s really going on here?
We don’t know … at least not yet … but Frazier’s excuse is laughable and we suspect it will be exposed as such sooner rather than later.