Local News

Family of late Summerton mayor files wrongful death lawsuit after fatal crash


It’s been almost four months since Summerton Mayor Tony Junious was killed in a car wreck on Governor Richardson Road at Liberty Hill Road.

The South Carolina Highway Patrol charged 33-year-old Toni Singleton with felony DUI.

Singleton was hospitalized after the crash but released a day later. She was then booked into the Clarendon County Detention Center, where she remains.

Court documents reveal that the family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the driver of the other vehicle involved in the accident. The lawsuit, filed on behalf of Junious’ wife, LeShenda Junious, seeks compensation for their loss.

Junious’ widow is suing Singleton for nearly $200,000 to cover medical expenses and property damage, along with more than $90,000 for attorney fees. Once these expenses are covered, $50,000 would be allocated to LaShenda. The lawsuit also notes that Singleton is underinsured.

The family’s attorney, Shaun Kent, declined to speak to The Manning Times regarding the ongoing lawsuit. LeShenda also declined to speak to media outlets, as she and their family continue to mourn her late husband.

“I’m definitely heartbroken. This is like a nightmare that I can’t wake up from,” said Regina Brown, Tony Junious’ first cousin and former Summerton Councilwoman.

The loss of Junious is still clearly and deeply felt within the community as the late mayor’s plans for Summerton were abruptly halted by the deadly crash in January.

“Everything has fallen back down to normal. Ain’t too much changed but I’m wishing it will,” said DuVauds Reagan, a lifelong Summerton resident. Reagan believes Junious was instrumental in moving the town forward and now feels Summerton has stagnated.

“We need more jobs and everything else around here. He was in the process of doing that,” Reagan added.

Following a special election in April, Mac Bagnal was elected as the new mayor of Summerton, securing over 50% of the votes. Bagnal was previously elected mayor in 2014 and served two terms before he was defeated in 2022 by Junious.

Singleton recently appeared before a judge and was denied bond for the second time regarding her criminal charges.