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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of South Carolina

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Former Horry County IT Security Director Sentenced to Two Years in Federal Prison for Theft of More than $340,000 in Government Funds

Florence, South Carolina --- United States Attorney Peter M. McCoy, Jr., announced today that Terry Shawn Petrill, 48, of Myrtle Beach, was sentenced to two years in federal prison and ordered to pay back more than $340,000 after pleading guilty to theft of federal funds.

“Those who steal from our local governments are raiding the South Carolina taxpayers,” said U.S. Attorney McCoy. “This is unacceptable, and as this case shows we will seek prison time and restitution against those who engage in such theft. I appreciate the dedicated work of our law enforcement partners and government officials in Horry County who provided critical assistance in this case.”

Evidence presented to the court showed that beginning on June 11, 2015, through August 23, 2018, Petrill ordered forty-one Cisco 3850 network switches that were to be installed on the Horry County network.  During this time period, Horry County received federal program funding. When the switches would arrive, Petrill advised that he would handle the installation. Petrill did not install the switches on the network and instead sold them to third parties and kept the proceeds for himself.  Petrill sold several of the switches on eBay and other third-party websites.  Petrill’s actions caused a loss to Horry County of $345,265.57. A spokesperson for Horry County noted that although the situation was unfortunate, the process worked, justice was served, and Horry County was thankful to their federal partners for their help in investigating and prosecuting the case.

Chief United States District Judge R. Bryan Harwell sentenced Petrill to 24 months in federal prison, to be followed by a three-year term of court-ordered supervision. There is no parole in the federal system.

The case was investigated by agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), assisted by the Horry County Police Department. Assistant United States Attorney Everett McMillian prosecuted the case.


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Financial Fraud
Derek A. Shoemake (843) 813-0982
Updated September 1, 2020