Man accused of failing to pay for timber

Robert Woodard

The S.C. Forestry Commission has charged an Andrews man with failing to pay a landowner for wood harvested on property in Berkeley County.

Forestry Commission officers said Robert C. Woodard, 37, struck a deal with a Jamestown landowner for timber valued at $4,482. Despite repeated attempts to collect payment, the landowner received only $1,800 of the revenue he was due from the sale of his timber, officers said.

Under South Carolina law, Woodard had 45 days in which to make payment in full, and deliver mill receipts, also known as scale tickets. Woodard was arrested when he failed to pay in that time period, officers said.

Officers who served the warrant found Woodard hiding in an attic. He was booked into the Hill-Finklea Detention Center in Moncks Corner. He also faces unrelated charges in Georgetown County, according to the forestry commission.

The commission reminds all landowners that their timber is valuable, and that the 13 million acres of mostly privately-owned forests in South Carolina support a $17 billion per year industry. Don't be rushed or pressured into selling your timber, and don't sell without a comprehensive contract, the commission advises.

In a news release, the the Forestry Commission said it protects the state's forest resources not only from fire, but from unscrupulous business practices as well. The Commission offers tips to landowners at its website http://www.trees.sc.gov/.