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KCSO named Agency of the Year for fourth straight year

Award recognizes DUI enforcement; Hathaway is officer of the year

Posted: April 9, 2015 5:07 p.m.
Updated: April 10, 2015 1:00 a.m.
Provided by the KCSO/

Kershaw County Sherriff Jim Matthews (third from left) shows off the Kershaw County Sheriff’s Office’s (KCSO) fourth consecutive S.C. Department of Public Safety (SCDPS) Agency of the Year Award for agencies of between 51 to 100 officers in size. The KCSO received the award for its excellence in DUI enforcement by its traffic unit. Members of the unit with Matthews are (from left) Deputy Tyler Pinkerton; Deputy Craymon Harvey; Deputy Brad Gerrald; Lt. Scott Myers; Sgt. Tom Hathaway, who received the SCDPS’ Officer of the Year Award; and Deputy Bryan Boyd.

Honors and accolades continue to come in for the Kershaw County Sheriff’s Office (KCSO), as the S.C. Department of Public Safety named the KCSO its Agency of the Year for the fourth consecutive year. The annual award is given to the top law enforcement agencies in the state in divisions based on the size of the agency. The KCSO won in the category for agencies with 51 to 100 officers.

The award is based on an agency’s success “in the area of DUI arrests, DUI victim services and anti-underage drinking programs” throughout the state in 2014, according to a KCSO press release. The KCSO established its traffic unit in 2011; the agency has won the award every year since. DUI arrests have risen each year in Kershaw County, while DUI related fatalities have dropped, according to KCSO statistics.

Those figures show there were 76 DUI arrests and 172 open container citations issued in 2011. In 2012, those numbers rose to 125 DUI arrests and 316 open container cases. The trend continued in 2013 with 163 DUI arrests and 390 open container violations and last year there were 265 DUI arrests and 533 open container citations.

In addition to the award for the entire agency, Sgt. Tom Hathaway of the traffic unit received the Officer of the Year award, chosen from among dozens of officers in South Carolina for his 64 DUI arrests and 33 narcotics arrests in 2014. Kershaw County Sheriff Jim Matthews said Hathaway has a passion for getting impaired drivers off the roads. 

“I am extremely proud of the hard work done by the deputies who have been assigned to the KCSO traffic unit. There is no doubt they have made the roads of Kershaw County safer by removing 265 drunk drivers from our roadways during 2014 and, I might add, in previous years as well,” Matthews said. “They exhibit a very high degree of professionalism and really want to make our county a safer place for everyone to drive.”

The KCSO’s enforcement efforts were shown to be successful in recent weeks, as the KCSO made only three DUI arrests following the Carolina Cup in Camden. At the time, Matthews cited the KCSO’s dedication to DUI enforcement, saying it is becoming well known and most drinkers at the event had sober drivers on hand to get them home safely.

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