Local Updates from ABC News Radio for Charleston.


Massive Search Continues for Missing SC Cheerleader

(RICHLAND COUNTY, S.C.) -- The FBI has joined local authorities in the search for a South Carolina cheerleader who vanished without a trace from her bedroom.

Gabrielle Swainson, 15, disappeared between 3:30 a.m. and 7:30 a.m. on August 18, during the time her mother was at work, police said.

When her mother Elvia Swainson returned home Saturday morning, Gabrielle's bed was empty.

"I grabbed my phone and started calling her number. The number rang a couple of times then it stopped," Swainson said.

Several more attempts to reach her daughter went straight to voicemail, she said. Although there were no signs of foul play, investigators believe the teen's disappearance was not voluntary. Police have not said whether they have been able to locate a signal from the teen's cellphone.

Gabrielle missed the first day of her sophomore year of high school on Thursday at Ridge View High School, where she had just made the junior varsity cheerleading squad.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


7 Feral James Island Dogs Caught After Killing Cats

(JAMES ISLAND, S.C.) -- Seven feral dogs that killed cats in James Island have been caught by authorities, The Post & Courier reports.

Mitchell Johnson, 58, witnessed these vicious dogs kill his pet cats recently.

The Charleston County Sheriff’s Office helped to trap the dogs by using Boot & Barkley cat food as bait.

Five dogs have been euthanized because animal experts do not believe they could be rehabilitated, according to a statement by the CEO by the Charleston Animal Society.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


SC Pension Fund Investments Down $1 Billion

(COLUMBIA, S.C.) -- A preliminary financial report believes that South Carolina’s retirement fund is now around $1 billion less than it was last year, according to The State.

The fund is used to pay the retirement benefits for around 110,000 retired S.C. public-sector employees.

Reynolds Williams, chairman of the S.C. Retirement System Investment Commission, says the lost of money is due to the fluctuation of the current economy.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


SC Part of Dole Salad Recall

(LOS ANGELES) -- Dole says it is voluntarily recalling 1,039 cases of bagged salad after a random sample tested positive for the Listeria bacteria.

Dole Fresh Vegetables, a division of Dole Food Company, which is based in Westlake Village, Calif., issued the statement Wednesday evening, saying no illnesses have been reported in association with the recall.

The specific product being recalled is 10 oz. Dole Italian Blend, with a “Use-By” date of Aug. 20, distributed in eight U.S. states: Alabama, Florida, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and Virginia.

The company said the recall is in response to an “isolated instance in which a sample of Dole Italian Blend salad yielded a positive result for Listeria monocytogenes in a random sample test conducted by the North Carolina Department of Agriculture.”

However, Dan Ragan, director of the food and drug protection division of North Carolina’s agriculture department, said the testing did not take place in the state. He said samples were sent to his state’s agriculture department as part of a regular practice through the USDA’s Microbiological Data Program, a national food-borne pathogen monitoring program implemented in 2001.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Five Guns Discovered in USC Student’s Dorm Room

(COLUMBIA, S.C.) -- Police discovered five handguns in a USC freshman’s dorm room, ABC affiliate WOLO-TV reports.

Trevor Stephens of Waterboro, 17, was arrested on Tuesday night.

According to officials, a faculty member was tipped off that Stephens may have guns, which lead to the search of Stephens’s Maxcy College dorm room. Five loaded handguns were found in the dorm.

Stephens is currently in custody and will be charged with unlawful possession of guns.

University officials have suspended Stephens and say he is no longer allowed on campus.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio