The Fifteenth Circuit Solicitor’s Office was created in 1962 after the Twelfth Circuit Solicitor’s Office was reduced from covering four counties to two, according to the South Carolina Department of Archives and History. Before Legislative Act 850 of 1962, the Twelfth Circuit Solicitor’s Office handled criminal cases in Florence, Marion, Horry and Georgetown counties.
The state’s Judicial Circuits began in 1769 when South Carolina leaders passed the state’s first Judicial Act to create its Circuit Court. But the position of Solicitor, which is sometimes called a district attorney or prosecutor in other states, was not created until 1791 when leaders wanted to provide assistance to the representatives of the Attorney General’s Office in the districts.
With the adoption of the South Carolina Constitution of 1868, all the circuit courts and districts were reorganized. It established one Solicitor for each circuit and they were elected by popular vote for four-year terms. The circuits were reorganized several more times before leaders settled on the 16 Judicial Circuits used today.
Solicitor Jimmy A. Richardson II is the eighth Solicitor to serve the citizens of the Fifteenth Circuit Solicitor’s Office, representing Horry and Georgetown counties.
Below is a brief history of each man that previously held the position of Solicitor in the 15th Judicial Circuit: