Army Corps of Engineers worker charged in deputy’s death


ANDERSON, S.C. (AP) – An employee for the Army Corps of Engineers is charged in the death of a South Carolina sheriff’s deputy who drowned during a training exercise.

The S.C. Department of Natural Resources told local media outlets that 37-year-old Joseph Jess Fleming of Pendleton was arrested Friday and charged with reckless homicide by boat. He was released from jail on a $25,000 personal-recognizance bond. It’s not known if he has an attorney.

Department spokesman Robert McCullough said Fleming, a park ranger on Lake Hartwell, was operating a boat during the training on Lake Hartwell on June 1.

Fleming, Anderson County Sheriff’s Deputy Devin Hodges and a fellow deputy were thrown from the boat. Anderson County Coroner Greg Shore says Hodges drowned when his lifejacket got caught on a propeller, pinning him underwater.

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