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Local law enforcement recognized for DUI enforcement

Posted: April 15, 2014 5:25 p.m.
Updated: April 16, 2014 5:00 a.m.

 

By GARY PHILLIPS

C-I (Camden, S.C.) staff reporter

 

Local law enforcement agencies have again been recognized for their efforts in getting impaired drivers off the roads.

The Kershaw County Sheriff’s Office (KCSO) was named Agency of the Year for the third consecutive year for excelling in driving under the influence (DUI) arrests, DUI victim services and anti-underage drinking programs in South Carolina during 2013. KCSO Lt. Scott Myers was recognized as Officer of the Year for DUI Enforcement during the ninth annual DUI Enforcement Recognition ceremony April 2 in Columbia.

The awards are presented to law enforcement agencies that made a significant impact on DUI enforcement and other alcohol related problems in South Carolina by the South Carolina Department of Public Safety and the Office of Highway Safety and Justice Programs. Five separate awards were given to agencies based on their size. The KCSO received this award for its efforts in 2011, 2012 and now in 2013 for an agency with 51 to 100 employees. Myers was the first KCSO deputy ever to receive the award.

Kershaw County Sheriff Jim Matthews said the efforts of his staff save lives.

"To receive this award three years in a row speaks volumes about the dedication of our traffic and DUI enforcement officers. Their efforts have not only saved countless lives, but also reduced crashes that result in crippling, life changing injuries," Matthews said. "These officers have done an outstanding job and service to our community. Lt. Myers is the supervisor over this unit and his leadership of these deputies went a long way toward their success. Kershaw County is fortunate to have such dedicated officers."

Camden Police Department (CPD) Sgt. James Steele was also named 2013 Officer of the Year for DUI enforcement for departments with between 26 and 50 officers. CPD Chief Joe Floyd said Steele consistently gives the extra effort needed to keep Camden streets safe.

"His enforcement efforts go beyond just being a road officer. He’s a road supervisor. He’s running the shift and still getting out there," he said. "A lot of his efforts, too, are when he’s off he’s up here working DUI enforcement. He’s getting paid to do it, but he’s coming out on his days off, focused on DUI enforcement. He’s really dedicated to it."

CPD Capt. Mike Stone said Steele not only makes DUI arrests, he builds cases that stick.

"It’s not only the number of cases he’s made, but the number of cases he’s been able to successfully prosecute. A DUI is extremely difficult to prosecute and Sgt. Steele has done remarkably well," Stone said. "We’ve got defense attorneys that their first question is, ‘who made the case?’ and if he made the case, they then have concerns. Not that our other officers don’t put forth the effort, it’s just that’s an area that’s been a focus for James Steele."

 

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