SC-1: Former Lowcountry Sheriff Jumps Into Race

AFGHAN SECURITY ADVISOR GIVES UP EMBASSY GIG TO SEEK CONGRESSIONAL SEAT It’s not often that a U.S. Congressional campaign is launched from a foreign country, but that’s exactly what happened this week in the increasingly bizarre (and crowded) race for South Carolina’s first congressional district. Ray Nash – former sheriff…

ray nash


It’s not often that a U.S. Congressional campaign is launched from a foreign country, but that’s exactly what happened this week in the increasingly bizarre (and crowded) race for South Carolina’s first congressional district.

Ray Nash – former sheriff of Dorchester County and a criminal justice advisor at the U.S. Embassy in Afghanistan – announced he was resigning his position abroad to return home to Summerville, S.C. and run for Congress.

The dateline for Nash’s statement?

Kabul, Afghanistan …

“Due to the recent attacks on our Constitutional freedoms, I was gravely concerned that I would no longer recognize my country upon my return,” Nash said. “Then I realized I had a clear opportunity to do something about it by running for Congress.”

Nash brands himself as a social and fiscal conservative, saying “our nation is facing a number of moral and constitutional crises, such as fiscal irresponsibility, unbridled government expansion, and assaults on Second Amendment protections.”

His campaign announcement came on the same day that former S.C. Gov. Mark Sanford formally declared his candidacy for the seat vacated earlier this year by recently nominated U.S. Sen. Tim Scott. In addition to Sanford, a flood of other candidates is running for the seat including S.C. Sen. Larry Grooms (R-Berkeley), S.C. Rep. Chip Limehouse (RINO-Charleston), S.C. Rep. Peter McCoy (R-James Island), S.C. Rep. Andy Patrick (RINO-Beaufort), former S.C. Sen. John Kuhn, Charleston businessman Teddy Turner, Charleston attorney Curtis Bostic and former Charleston County School Board member Larry Kobrovsky.

Former S.C. Treasurer Thomas Ravenel has also indicated he is considering a bid.


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Zobro January 15, 2013 at 9:06 pm


So far, I like him better than 9 out of 32 of the other guys running in this race, particularly Sanford and his clown-squad from Douch-a-hue Direct.

hhuuhh?? January 16, 2013 at 6:41 am

Yeah, I thought I remembered his name from some scandal.

How in the world did someone with that kind of background get any kind of government job with “criminal justice” in Afghanistan?
Although I think our Congress is at least as corrupt as the Afghan government, this man’s history should have excluded him teaching anyone about honest law enforcement.

News4 Charleston:
Nash’s stint as sheriff wasn’t without controversy. An audit of the Dorchester County Detention Center found that over $50 thousand had been embezzled by a longtime employee under Nash’s watch. That same year an inmate escaped from custody twice sparking an internal investigation into prison security. Nash retired in 2009 after 12 years of service.

Old Bike Dude January 16, 2013 at 8:07 am

He’s perfect for Afghanastan.

Twinkie Ho-Ho January 16, 2013 at 11:12 am

Not really a gov’t job. Low bid from a private contractor.

hhuuhh?? January 16, 2013 at 6:44 am

Post and Courier:

Dorchester County Sheriff Ray Nash announced today that he will be retiring at the end of his term in January 2009. Nash, who has held the post for 11 years, said a number of factors influenced his decision.

“My wife and I have talked for years about the right time for me to retire from this office. Since I started out in the retirement system at age 17, I will be eligible to retire with full benefits at the end of this term,” Nash said. “And now that Terry Boatwright has announced that he is running for sheriff, we have a candidate who I can confidently pass the baton to.”

Related stories

New candidate for Dorchester sheriff – 1/25/2008
Nash defends spending jail funds to feed Romanian chiefs – 11/13/2007
Dorchester sheriff focuses on values – 11/9/2007
Nash ponders money handling – 11/2/2007
Nash’s jail fee on hold for now – 10/12/2007
Nash: audit is a ‘witch hunt’ – 9/1/2007

Boatwright, Folly Beach’s public safety director, announced last week that he’s running for sheriff. Retired State Law Enforcement Division supervisor L.C. Knight also confirmed that he will file in March for the June primary.

Nash met with some of his officers and staff at the monthly in-service training session to make the announcement. Nash says that he plans to do more training with his private consulting business, Police Dynamics, and explore other options as well.

“I believe that God is freeing me to pursue other interests at this time in my life and I am excited about what the future holds,” the former Summerville police chief said. “We still have a year to accomplish other objectives and meet the additional challenges that we will certainly encounter.”

The move comes amid a series of high-profile and at times, embarrassing, incidents at the sheriff’s office.

In November, a Dorchester County jail inmate escaped after a Bible study on “The Purpose Driven Life” and spent a month on the run before his capture in the Florence area.

In addition, at County Council’s request, a forensic auditor is investigating the sheriff’s office spending. The most significant finding so far was that somebody apparently siphoned off jail money. Nash said Captain Arnold Pastor, his former jail chief, diverted checks from a jail fund into a personal account. That account shows expenditures to a motel; $2,241 to Carnival Cruise Lines; a $599.45 cash card withdrawal on the Royal Caribbean International cruise ship Sovereign of the Seas; and more than 50 ATM withdrawals. Pastor has not been charged.

Nash has said SLED is waiting for the audit to be finished to bring the case to a statewide grand jury.

Auditors are also looking into a $65,000 payment Nash gave to his administrator’s brother-in-law over the past two years to maintain the department’s computer system. Nash has defended that move, and also has said he has no regrets for paying his former campaign manager $1,050 a month as jail chaplain.

Nash made no mention of those incidents in a written release announcing his retirement. Instead, he focused on his achievements as sheriff, such as reducing crime in the county, improving equipment and training, and achieving a high clearance rate for homicides

vicupstate January 16, 2013 at 8:43 am

An incompetent biblethumpper. Sounds like the ideal republican candidate.

Smirks January 16, 2013 at 9:23 am

Can’t be worse than the crop of washed up politicians clamoring for vacant House seats.

SC-1: Anyone can run!

Lance Riprock January 16, 2013 at 9:48 am

Cue up “Send in the Clowns”. Clown caravan led by that grey little chinless creature Sanford.

bamberger January 16, 2013 at 10:13 am

He better stay put, as he cannot win the race. The media will rip him a new one.

Jerry Ziegler January 18, 2013 at 9:20 am

I am a former Dorchester County Sheriff Deputy. I worked under Captain Arnold Pastor. He worked under Chief Barney Barns and Chief Barns reported directly to Sheriff Ray Nash.

During my time as a Deputy I worked in the Jail at St George, in booking at the Annex in Summerville, and as Transport Deputy and Transport Supervisor. During all that time I had nothing but admiration and trust in Sheriff Nash. He always led us with knowledge, experience, honor, and the best of character, in law enforcement as a leader. His method of leader ship was to give his department heads the freedom to handle their people as long as they were following policies and procedures set forth by his office and if anyone committed an infraction that was detrimental to the Sheriff’s Office, they were dealt with after an internal investigation. If the infraction required it, I can assure you he took it to a higher level (SLED). Nothing was covered up, or swept under the rug. It was always out in the open, even if it were a personal friend of his who committed the infraction.
When we were pinned with the badge of office he always talked about how he expected the badge to get tarnished from wear, and scratched, or nicked from doing our duty. He also stated that he would not expect us to tarnish the badge of office doing anything illegal, or immoral. He expected us to work in the Sheriff’s Office and retire with Honor. He told us that the badge, and the commission we just swore to gave us lawful authority, but he didn’t expect us to usurp, or abuse that authority. He stated that we worked for the citizens of Dorchester County, and that we should do our best for the citizens because we work for them.
I know we in the Detention side of the Sheriff’s Office were blindsided by the news of what Captain Pastor did by embezzling all that money from the inmate fund. However, I don’t know anyone who was more hurt, and dismayed by what Captain Pastor did, then Sheriff Nash. It broke our hearts to see him go through the investigation, and having to fire, and arrest a man he trusted with such a high position.
Anyone, saying anything about Sheriff Nash in a detrimental way, is just venting sour grapes because they are angry with Ray for being an upright guy who wouldn’t let deputies get away with violating the policies, and procedures of the Sheriff’s office. Nor-would he allow himself to get involved in corruption of any sort. He is first and foremost a CHRISTIAN and I know he goes every day to prayer for God’s help in each days struggle, and His word for guidance. Ray is totally trustworthy and will do his best for the people of the 1st Congressional district, and the United States. VOTE RAY NASH!

Jerry Ziegler
Former Cpl
Dorchester County Deputy

Chris Pia January 28, 2013 at 5:18 pm

I assume your army mate and friend Timothy McVeigh was also a good christian and assume you were just as astounded when he was in oklahoma city touting his christian viewsand anti-government sentiment.
I find it funny that Ray Nash is claiming he is a constitutional sheriff.I had a campaign bumper sticker on my car for then sheriff elect L.C. Knight on my vehichle and was harassed repeatedly and eventually fired for telling offers of a mrsa outbreak inside the jail and to wash their hands.I sued sheriff nash and the case was dismissed because in South Carolina Sheriffs have immunity in a will to work state.
Now Jerry I know you will claim sour grapes because I got fired.So go right ahead.In my opinion Ray Nash was involved in Captain Pastorrs misdeeds.I also find it funny that the Police training program in Afghanistan is under investigation for 1.4 BILLION in missing or misspent funds. I can only imagine whatthe deficit will be if Ray Nash gets into Congress..

Martha Washington January 29, 2013 at 11:31 pm

1. “By hhuuhh??” It is so easy to criticize based on gossip isn’t it- your insults have no basis in truth. Did you ever think that in an election, people who want someone else to win will spin anything?
2.”vicupstate” An incompetent biblethumpper? I don’t know you like you don’t know him but my judgment of you will be more accurate than yours: you are a vocabulary stunted atheist.
3. Chris Pia: You have succeeded in using conjecture and gossip and rumors but have not convinced me of anything but sour grapes from your loss. Your stretch of the truth is laughable.

Simply put, men who flail insults are sore losers, have inflated egos and are probably impotent. Why don’t you listen to the man and give him a chance. You know most politicians in there now are crooks (including Scott: Mr PATRIOT Act and NDAA signer) so if you are so smart, why don’t you run. Or are your characters too weak and shaky to take the heat.

Chris Pia January 30, 2013 at 4:29 am

Martha,Follow the money.The truth will stretch along way and it will tell you why your good sheriff is protecting the second ammendment.Chuck Baldwin,Cory Burnell and Chuck Colson all surrounded by Ray Nash following,Research.
I don’t need to prove this.Already have.
This is about right and wrong.

Chris pia February 1, 2013 at 6:53 pm

Jerry, Arnold Pastor was not fired by Nash. He was allowed to resign


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