HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WBTW) — One of the charges against a couple accused of public sex acts in several places across Horry County — including on the Myrtle Beach SkyWheel — is not a very common charge, 15th Circuit Solicitor Jimmy Richardson told News13 in an interview Friday.
“This is the first time I’ve seen ‘participation or preparation of obscene materials,'” Richardson said, referring to one of the charges the Harmons are facing. “First time I’ve ever seen that charged, but the indecent exposure happens all the time, in one form or another.”
Lori and Eric Harmon, both 36, are accused of performing sex acts on the Myrtle Beach SkyWheel, in a community pool, in a Food Lion parking lot, and near a playground in Horry County, according to police. They’re also accused of filming the acts and uploading them to a porn website.
“I think the fact that is was uploaded probably played a role in them making the arrest,” Richardson said.
Richardson said since the charges are misdemeanors, a potential placement on the sex offender registry could be worse than any other punishment they’d receive.
“It appears with both of them being misdemeanors, the biggest thing to worry about [for them] — and that would be up to a judge, if it ever did see its way into a courtroom — would be the possibility of being placed on the sex registry,” he said. “When a person or people are put on the sex registry, that’s basically a lifetime situation. So, that’s probably a lot more than what they would ever get for these misdemeanors.”
“It doesn’t take an awful lot to make an arrest,” he said. “You just have to be able to prove that it’s more likely than not that a crime was committed. Obviously, when it gets to our office, we will have to be able to prove these charges beyond a reasonable doubt and it’s a much bigger standard.”
In one video, the couple is having sex inside a gondola encased with glass and in view of the public on the Skywheel ride on North Ocean Blvd. The incident happened on or around Jan. 2.
In another video, the couple is seen having sex in a community pool in the Surfside Beach section of Horry County and Lori Harmon is seen exposing herself while sitting on top of a vending machine along with other lewd acts, police said.
Both Eric Harmon and Lori Harmon can be seen exposing themselves and performing sex acts at the community pool in the video, according to the report.
“The actions were recorded by both defendant and co-defendant and uploaded to the adult web site…during Christmas break, on or about Dec. 23, 2020,” the officer wrote in the report.
The Harmons are facing charges of indecent exposure, participation or preparation of obscene materials. Lori Harmon is also facing a charge of malicious injury to personal property.