LAURENS, S.C.; October 21, 2022 – A longtime Clinton meth dealer with a lengthy criminal history is headed to prison for the next two decades after pleading guilty last week to meth-related charges, 8th Circuit Solicitor David M. Stumbo announced Monday.
Gregory Alan Templeton, 54, of Clinton, pleaded guilty last Monday afternoon at the Laurens County Courthouse to distribution of methamphetamine, third or subsequent offense, and distribution of methamphetamine within proximity of a school.
Circuit Judge Frank R. Addy Jr. accepted the plea and sentenced Templeton to 20 years in prison on the two charges. The charges are considered serious under state law, meaning Templeton must serve a minimum of 85 percent of his sentence before being considered for early release.
Templeton has a lengthy criminal history that includes nine previous convictions for meth-related charges and five periods of incarceration in the past 20 years. He was scheduled for trial in September but failed to appear and was subsequently issued a bench warrant. Templeton’s case was second on the trial docket for the current term and the state previously served him with official intent to seek a life-without-parole sentence at trial. Shortly after, Templeton elected to change his plea to guilty and accept the negotiated 20-year sentence.
In February 2020, detectives with the Clinton Police Department set up a controlled buy with a confidential informant. The informant wore a video camera and was able to purchase methamphetamine from Templeton.
Assistant Solicitor Jake Lampke handled the case for the state with assistance from 8th Circuit Investigators Jared Hunnicutt and Josh Pittman. Templeton was represented by Myreon Williams of the 8th Circuit Public Defender’s Office.
Solicitor Stumbo praised the work of his staff, along with Clinton police Det. Shane Prather, in securing the lengthy conviction.
“Gregory Templeton clearly has no intention of being anything other than a criminal, as evidenced by his very lengthy criminal history,” Solicitor Stumbo said. “I am glad to see him sent away to prison for a very long time and will continue to fight to take drug dealers like this one off of our streets.”