Another South Carolina Sex Scandal

COLUMBIA, S.C. — A deputy assistant attorney general who said he was on his lunch break when an officer found him with a stripper and sex toys in his sport utility vehicle has been fired, his boss said Wednesday.

Roland Corning, 66, a former state legislator, was in a secluded part of a downtown cemetery when an officer spotted him Monday, according to a police report obtained by The Associated Press under the Freedom of Information Act.

As the officer approached, Corning sped off, then pulled over a few blocks away. He and the 18-year-old woman with him, an employee of the Platinum Plus Gentleman's Club, gave conflicting stories about what they were doing in the cemetery, Officer Michael Wines wrote in his report, though he did not elaborate.

Corning gave Wines a badge showing he worked for the state Attorney General's Office. Wines, whose wife also works there, called her to make sure Corning was telling the truth.

He then searched the SUV, where he found a Viagra pill and several sex toys, items Corning said he always kept with him, "just in case," according to the report.

Corning and the woman were let go without charges. Wines' wife reported the call to her supervisor, who told Attorney General Henry McMaster.

"We received credible information about inappropriate behavior Monday afternoon," McMaster said Wednesday. "And by the close of business, he was no longer working here."

Such a trip to the cemetery "would not be appropriate, at any time, for an assistant attorney general," McMaster said.

There was no answer Wednesday at a number listed for Corning, who was a Republican legislator in the late 1980s and early 1990s. He was hired in 2000 by the attorney general's office, where he worked on securities cases.

South Carolina has had its share of scandal lately, most notably Gov. Mark Sanford's disappearance in June. His office told reporters he was hiking the Appalachian Trail, but he was really in Argentina visiting his mistress.


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