Haley: Prisons director Byars suffered stroke

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley says Corrections Director Bill Byars is recovering after suffering a mild stroke.

Haley said Thursday that Byars is expected to make a full recovery and eventually return to his job. Haley’s spokesman declined to provide any additional information on Byars’ health.

Haley named Bob Ward as acting director until then. Ward has been at the agency for 29 years and has previously served as interim director.

The 65-year-old Byars was easily confirmed as prisons director in February.

The former family court judge had led the juvenile justice agency since January 2003. Byars is widely credited for resolving a 13-year federal lawsuit and overhauling that agency. His supervision programs there resulted in a nearly 40 percent reduction in juvenile repeaters 12 months after release.

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