Police & Highway Patrol Reports/Posted Saturday, May 28, 2005

Mytle Beach
From 12 a.m. to May 26 to 12a.m. May 27
Assaults | 4
Disorderly conduct | 28
Stolen motorcycles | 5
Speeding | 1
Public intoxication | 2
Assaults | 4
S.C. Highway Patrol
From midnight Thursday to 4 p.m. Friday
Motorcycle wrecks | 24
Surfside Beach
From 7 a.m. on May 25 to 7 a.m. on May 26
Wreck | 1
Noise violation | 1
Speeding | 4


Posted on Sat, May. 28, 2005/Two men charged in posting of derogatory anti-biker signs/By Kenneth A. Gailliard/The Sun News/CONWAY - Two were charged Thursday after police found them planting derogatory signs aimed at discouraging visitors to the Atlantic Beach Bikefest along S.C. 22 near S.C. 905.  The Bikefest is an annual event that attracts thousands of motorcyclists who are predominantly black. The two men who were charged are white.  A trooper approached the men as they posted one sign and noticed that two other signs had been posted nearby, said Horry County Police Major David Avant.  The trooper issued a ticket for littering to each man - David Beneduci, 34, of Conway, and William Victor Davis, 43, of Myrtle Beach. They were fined $420 each, Avant said.  He said Horry County police also are investigating to determine whether the men violated a county ordinance by placing the signs on county right of way.  Slogans on the signs contained six different statements that suggested the incoming bikers were not welcome in the area and urged them to leave.  It was unclear Thursday whether the racial content of the homemade signs could lead to more serious charges for the men.  "Signs like there are negative, and this is not what Horry County is about," Avant said.   Avant said a trooper stopped the men from posting signs about 1 a.m. after he noticed them stopping and starting their vehicle on the side of the road, and turning off the lights on their sport utility vehicle in between.  After stopping the men, police found 14 additional signs in the SUV.   Both men said they deny the allegations.   The signs were planted as visitors were streaming into the Myrtle Beach area for the annual event and the Memorial Day holiday weekend.  Officials from the Horry County Branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People said they had not received complaints about the signs on a hot line they established this week.  The NAACP said the hot line is part of their effort to monitor Bikefest to possibly provide evidence for future litigation.  A lawsuit filed against the city of Myrtle Beach in 2003 is being appealed. While the appeal is in progress, the city will continue a one-way traffic pattern on Ocean Boulevard that spurred the lawsuit.  The hot line has been overwhelmed with calls," said Lamont Roberts, president of the NAACP Youth and College Division, but he said none have been about the signs.


Posted on Sunday, May 29, 2005/The Sun News, Myrtle Beach

Biker survives near-fatal crash        A biker traveling at a high speed suffered life-threatening injuries after he slammed into a truck Saturday on U.S. 17 Business in Myrtle Beach, said Sgt. Janet Arrington, of the traffic division of the Myrtle Beach Police Department.  She said the unidentified male motorcyclist was apparently talking with another biker as they traveled north on U.S. 17 near the Carolina Opry when the accident occurred around 4:12 p.m. Saturday.  The group of bikers was going about 60 mph at the time, she said, noting the speed limit is 45 in that stretch of the roadway.  The injured man was taken to Grand Strand Regional Medical Center, where he was listed in serious condition.  She said the helmet he was wearing likely saved his life.  The driver of the pickup, a Dodge Dakota, was not hurt, but his wife was taken to Grand Strand Regional with minor injuries, Arrington said.



Just after midnight a motorcycle hit a city Myrtle Beach police officer.  The incident happened off 6 Avenue South. The suspect Ryan Lanard Bonneau was being pulled over with several other motorcycles for traveling between lanes.  According to the police report Bonneau sped off and later hit an officer - who was treated and released at the hospital. The suspect faces assault charges.  Bonneau is also accused of pushing a female passenger off the back of his bike.



Posted Saturday, May 28, 2005/The Sun News/1 Killed, 1 hurt in crash        A Maryland man died Friday as bikers began gathering in big numbers for the Atlantic Beach Bikefest.  Police said John Dyson, 38, of Mechanicsville, Md., was speeding on U.S. 17 Business in Myrtle Beach when he and his female passenger collided with a midsize sport utility vehicle at 3:20 p.m. Sgt. Janet Arrington, who heads the Myrtle Beach police traffic division, said neither of the pair, riding a Suzuki Hayabusa, was wearing a helmet. S.C. law does not require motorcycle riders older than 21 to wear helmets.  The pair were taken to Grand Strand Regional Medical Center, where Dyson died of multiple trauma at 4:36 p.m., Horry County Deputy Coroner Tamara Willard said.  Dyson's passenger remained hospitalized in serious condition Friday night. Willard said Dyson was visiting the area with a nephew and friends.  Before the crash, Dyson sped away from a group of other riders as they traveled north on U.S. 17 Business, Arrington said.  Dyson collided with a Hyundai Santa Fe turning left onto 18th Avenue North.  The impact caused Dyson and his passenger to be thrown into the roadway, said Arrington, who estimated Dyson was traveling in excess of 60 mph.  The speed limit is 35 mph in that area, Arrington said.  There were several less-serious crashes, as well, as bikers arrived amid a massive police presence in Atlantic Beach and along Ocean Boulevard.  "There seems to be a lot of bikers here," said Brad Dean, president of the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce. "There is definitely going to be lots of people here this weekend."  At least 72 percent of Horry County's hotel rooms were expected to be full this weekend, with that likely to rise if nice weather lures spontaneous travelers, according to Coastal Carolina University's Clay Brittain Jr. Center for Resort Tourism.  But hotel numbers might underestimate the number of visitors, according to city spokesman Mark Kruea, who expects a number of one-day visitors to come to town without spending the night. He said there seems to be at least as many attendees as last year, if not more.  At the Myrtle Beach Convention Center on Friday, vendors set up and the National Association of Black Bikers handed out cards promoting the weekend's activities. One card urged bikers to sign a petition supporting the reinstatement of two-way traffic on Ocean Boulevard.   The petition is called "100,000 strong proves them wrong!"  The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People has sued Myrtle Beach to stop the use of a one-way traffic pattern, which the group says is discriminatory because that system isn't used during the Carolina Harley-Davidson Dealers Association Myrtle Beach Rally.  The city says the rallies create different traffic issues that demand the different patterns.  "Traffic on Ocean Boulevard is moving, which is what the traffic plan helps it do," Kruea said Friday afternoon.  Ben Brown, one of the owners of B&M Cycles, said traffic was at a standstill in front of his shop at 508 N. Kings Highway, slowing business.  Music boomed outside the convention center as bikers checked out goods by Dub and Dodge, a couple of the sponsors.  Mayor Mark McBride wanted to cancel the events at the convention center, but City Council did not support him.