Let’s talk about supervisory neglect. About a week ago one of Sheriff Wayne DeWitt’s rabid supporters/employees posted a comment on our post about the St. Stephen murder in which the writer laid the blame for the personnel shortages and other problems at BCSO directly at the feet of the current Berkeley County Supervisor. The writer, while foaming at the mouth, claimed the Supervisor was responsible for the fact that there are insufficient personnel on hand to staff the current jail, much less the 10 million dollar addition which is sitting empty and unused.
Even though information came to light during the election that DeWitt failed to ask for personnel funding during the past few years, and only engaged at the last minute when it became a campaign issue, the writer chose to ignore that fact. Instead, they tried to imply some family connection between one of the candidates for sheriff and the Supervisor.
Here is the comment to refresh your memory.
“This won’t get posted, just like several other things that go against what the “Chief” wants put out there, but what the hell, I have the breath and typing skills, so here goes… Very good Post “Chief”, glad you’ve rested up from your week off. It’s clearly “Dewitt’s” fault on this (I’ll get to the parentheses in a minute). A murder happened, a murder was solved, but let’s do what the “career politicians” do, let’s make it sound bad any way we can. Ya see, when I see “career politician” I think of the people that put out there what they want you to hear, like “I’m gonna put more Deputy’s, more Jail Officer’s, a new CSO program” like someone just tried to do. What they don’t tell you is they have a personal agenda, sort of like oh, I don’t know, a family relationship with the current person in charge of a SUPERVISOR type position. When it comes to reality they don’t wanna know how the current SUPERVISOR takes what is submitted, cuts out what he doesn’t want considered, and then Council doesn’t know about the problems that exist. Go ahead and research it, “Chief”. Don’t rely on the pansy ass people that text or e-mail you with stuff they don’t agree with, actually research it. Again, I don’t expect to see this in print, cuz it goes against your personal bash against the man that has more balls (tits, in your case) than you…. Oh Yeah, it’s Sheriff Dewitt when ya put it out there. You don’t have to respect the person, but since you’re in law enforcement at NCPD you should at least respect the rank.”
Now, politics in Berkeley County is a convoluted and dirty business. We are told the current Supervisor, Dan Davis, was initially elected with the help and endorsement of Sheriff DeWitt. Apparently there was a falling out and DeWitt has now thrown his support behind another candidate, Moncks Corner Mayor William Peagler. Some say it’s because the town of Moncks Corner has provided police cars to BCSO.
We had heard about the shortage of vehicles at BCSO for some time. Curiously, once a FOIA was filed for vehicle information, many of them showed up in the parking lot at BCSO, with a pickup truck making the trip back from North Carolina and a Gator coming back from a property in Six Mile. Based on the numbers we have seen, almost every employee of the BCSO, sworn and non-sworn, seemed to have a department vehicle to drive.
One thing the writer of the above comment chose to ignore is that personnel problems are the direct result of mismanagement by the Sheriff. Not only did he fail to act when he needed personnel, he likes to keep those slots filled with folks who are not certified by the state to do the job they were hired to do. We addressed one of those situations earlier in the year. Now we will tell you about another.
In 2009 Scarlett Wilson was trying to get some positive press by going after the death penalty for murder defendant Colin James Broughton. The case is one of several that defense attorneys recently used to allege misconduct by Wilson. There were quite a few other irregularities in that trial, but the one we are concerned with is the allegations against a ranking officer at the Berkeley Count jail of suborning perjury, witness tampering and obstruction of justice.
It seems that some were so hot to get Broughton sentenced to death they tried to intimidate detention officers into lying on the stand about Broughton’s behavior while incarcerated awaiting trial. 9th Circuit Solicitor Scarlett Wilson was furious her death penalty quest had been derailed.
The perpetrator of this intimidation and coercion was a lieutenant. When the attempt to skew the testimony of detention officers was discovered, the judge declared a mistrial on the penalty phase, sentenced Broughton to life in prison and a SLED investigation followed. Yeah, we know, SLED and BCSO - not a lot getting done there.
The lieutenant was ultimately “cleared” by SLED and was not charged. He was, however, demoted to sergeant, his state certification was pulled and he was informed he could never testify in general sessions court ever again. All of this made this person, in effect, useless as a law enforcement officer.
Would it surprise you to know that officer is still employed by BCSO, taking up a slot that could be used by someone who could actually do the job required of them? If this officer’s certification was indeed pulled, we have to wonder how a non-certified deputy or detention officer can continue to wear the uniform, hold rank, or, indeed, work in any law enforcement capacity.
That’s just one example of a person filling a slot they are no longer qualified for. A slot which could be filled by someone capable of doing the job. No wonder BCSO is always short on personnel.