Horry County magistrate drops assault-by-mob charges against South Carolina GOP political director, 2 others

CONWAY, S.C. (WBTW) — Assault-by-mob charges against a state Republican Party political director from Horry County, her mother and another woman were dismissed on Friday, according to the 15th Circuit Solicitor’s Office.

Magistrate Brad Mayers dropped the charges against Braley Estep, her mother Michele Stalvey Estep and Katie Richelle Turvey during a preliminary hearing. The three women were charged in early January after a Dec. 23 fight at Stalvey’s Watering Hole, a Conway bar operated by the Estep family.

Katie Turvey / Photo: J. Reuben Long Detention Center
Katie Turvey / Photo: J. Reuben Long Detention Center

Turvey still faces two other charges related to the incident, the solicitor’s office said. Those include malicious injury to animals or personal property and petit larceny.

After their arrest, the Esteps were booked into the J. Reuben Long Detention Center. They each posted a $5,000 bond and were released from jail on Jan. 3. Turvey was booked into the jail on Jan. 4 and released the same day after posting bonds totaling $9,250.

A bio on the Republican Party’s website indicates that Braylee Estep graduated from the University of South Carolina in December 2021 with a political science degree. She also attended Conway High School, according to an Horry County Schools document.

She served as an intern with the SCGOP’s Victory Program in Myrtle Beach and has been involved in multiple statewide campaigns, the bio said.

During the 2022 election cycle, she served as the regional field director in Georgia for the race between Gov. Brian Kemp and Herschel Walker. Her bio says she made more than 500,000 grassroot connections during that race.

More recently, in 2023, she worked on the reorganization process of the 7th Congressional District in South Carolina, according to her bio.

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Dennis Bright is a Digital Producer at News13. He joined the team in May 2021. Dennis is a West Virginia native and a graduate of Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia. Follow Dennis on, Facebook, X, formerly Twitter, and read more of his work here.

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