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Investigation into Denmark Police shooting, still ongoing Print E-mail

In responding to what Council member Hope Long – Weldon noted were repeated inquiries by herself to find out information on the status of the Denmark Police officer involved shooting that took place back in August of this year, Bamberg County Sheriff Ed. Darnell, who was in attendance at Denmark City Council’s October 17, meeting sought to bring some clarity to the matter.

Sheriff Darnell said he spoke with David Pascoe, the solicitor of Orangeburg County this afternoon in reference to the on-going investigation, “which that is what it is, an ongoing investigation” . Darnell said the request for the investigation was made by the Orangeburg Sheriff’s Office because the incident took place in Orangeburg County. “It’s in the hands of the solicitor of Orangeburg County and the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) report has been turned over to Solicitor Pascoe.” Darnell said Pascoe is reviewing the case “himself.” The U.S. Attorney’s office is also reviewing the case. The Sheriff noted that this type of incident takes “a long time to get resolved.” “Certainly everyone wants to get the right thing done and have the right understanding as just what took place.”

“It is an on-going investigation, you can call Columbia, you can call the U.S. Attorney’s office, the only thing they are going to tell you is that it is an ongoing investigation.” When the final report comes in it will come back the same way it went up. Solicitor Pascoe’s office in Orangeburg County will be notified, once the solicitors’ office gets the report, then it comes back to the municipality and then the County.“

“We want to make sure that every detail is looked at thoroughly. It’s affected all of us and we want to make sure everything is done properly. That is one agency we do not rush, they call the shots. We cannot push for their decisions, we have to wait,” Darnell said of the SLED.

Also during the meeting:

• Denmark Police Chief Leroy Grimes said the department created 72 new case files for the month. Chief Grimes reported the police department will be hosting Halloween for all kids on October 31, 2011 at Jim Harrison Park (5:30pm. until 7:00pm). The Voorhees College Homecoming Parade will be held on November 12, at 10:00a.m.)

• City of Denmark Finance Director Rusty Munoz noted that total revenue in excess of expenses was less than anticipated ($2,931.86). Intergovernmental revenue continues to decrease down 7.23 percent compared to last year, as expected. Fire Hydrant replacement is continuing and lift station repairs an replacement has began.

• Fire Chief Charles Breland said the fire department responded to 16 total calls this month. Chief Breland reported that truck 301 is back in service at the station and 308 ladder truck is still out of service.

In the public comments portion of the meeting:

Hilma Curtis expressed her concern for the City of Denmark’s appearance: “Why do you allow our town to look so neglected? Curtis asked. She stated that in one of the City’s parks that cost “$200,000” the grass was not cut and weeds were growing up. Curtis compared the appearance of the City of Denmark to the neighboring towns of Blackville and Barnwell. “Blackville is much nicer and Barnwell is much nicer,” Curtis said. Curtis went on to offer her expertise to the City. “If you will hire me I will show you what needs to be done.”

Mayor Wright told Curtis that Council has made “a commitment” to change the entrance to the City. “Your point is well taken. I appreciate your coming to us and raising that concern. Something will be done,” Mayor Wright told Curtis.

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