Documents show Camden PD leadership was concerned about officer’s force two years before alleged assault
CAMDEN, S.C. (WIS) - WIS has obtained documents showing the Camden Police Department raised concerns overuse of force with one of its police officers in 2018. That process wasn’t completed, and the officer is now facing an assault charge for knocking a suspect out in 2020.
SLED agents arrested Johnathan Goldsmith for assault and misconduct in January 2021 over an October 2020 incident.
- Allegations of excessive force brought against current, former Kershaw Co. deputies
- Kershaw County sheriff, former deputy named in lawsuit over alleged assault
At the time of the incident, Goldsmith was a Kershaw County Sheriff’s Deputy. He served as a deputy from January 2019 until November 2020 when he was fired.
Prior to his time with KCSD, SC Criminal Justice Academy records show Goldsmith served as a Fairfield County Deputy (Sept. 2018 to January 2019) and as a Camden Police Department officer (May 2016 to Sept. 2018).
WIS used the Freedom of Information Act to request documents on Goldsmith’s time at Camden PD.
They show on July 31, 2018, the department’s use of force board reviewed 31 incidents from January through July 2018.
The board included then Capt. Lee Boan, who went on to be elected Kershaw County Sheriff.
The documents state 13 of the 31 incidents were connected to Johnathan Goldsmith which “raised concerns” of the board. While all of the incidents followed policy, the board still determined Goldsmith needed further de-escalation training and a review on October 1, 2018.
Goldsmith resigned just over a month after the department determined he needed further training, with his last day on Sept. 6, 2018.
Goldsmith proceeded work as a Fairfield County deputy until Jan. 29, 2019.
The Kershaw County Sheriff’s Department, at that point led by Boan, hired Goldsmith the next day.
Both Goldsmith and Baon are named in a lawsuit over the October 2020 incident.
Attorneys Robert Butcher, Deborah Butcher and Brett Perry represent the plaintiff in the lawsuit and sent WIS a statement reading:
The citizens of Kershaw trusted Lee Boan to keep them safe when they elected him as sheriff of Kershaw County. He failed almost as soon as he was elected. Lee Boan knew the dangers of hiring Goldsmith at the time of hiring because on July 31, 2018 Lee Boan had personally recommended Goldsmith receive “De-escalation of Force” training when he worked as Goldsmith’s superior at the Camden Police Department.
Boan and Goldsmith’s lawyer for the lawsuit William Davidson II did not return requests for comment. CPD Chief Joe Floyd said he was not available to comment on Thursday.
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