LATTA, S.C. (WBTW) — A court lifted an injunction Monday that blocked Latta mayor-elect Henry “Robbie” Coward from being sworn in while there’s a dispute over his residency.
The court ruled that Coward could try to be sworn in as mayor before the case is resolved but must give all parties a 10-day notice, according to documents. In court Friday, Coward’s attorney argued that there was no need to continue the injunction. He said that if Coward broke state election laws, he’d be banned from running again.
Teresa Mason, who Coward beat in the election, protested the results due to Coward’s residency status. Coward received 275 votes to Mason’s 192.
In a hearing Dec. 11, the Latta Municipal Election Commission found that Coward doesn’t live in the Town of Latta, as required by South Carolina law, and did not live in the town for at least 30 days before the election, according to the documents.
Documents show that Coward hasn’t given up his other residency, which is in Dillon. After the hearing, the commission overturned the results of the election due to Coward being ineligible for the position.
Coward appealed the election commission’s decision to overturn the results of the election. In the appeal, he claimed because he was allowed to legally vote in the election for mayor, he is allowed to be a candidate in that same race.
In the meantime, the town’s previous mayor will remain in the position until Coward is sworn in.