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Orangeburg officer fired after excessive use of force on Black man

Published: Jul. 30, 2021 at 12:58 PM EDT|Updated: Jul. 30, 2021 at 5:43 PM EDT
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ORANGEBURG, S.C. (WIS) - An officer has been fired from the Orangeburg Department of Public Safety after an internal committee concluded he used excessive force on a man when responding to a 911 call.

It happened around 5 p.m. Monday, July 26 at 741 Colleton Street in Orangeburg, officials confirmed. That’s the address of Colleton Village townhomes near the campuses of South Carolina State and Claflin universities.

The officer, who has not been identified, was responding to a call about a man with a gun.

At some point, the officer used force on a man. Exactly what the officer did has not been revealed.

Neighbors told WIS the officer put his boot on the victim’s head and kicked the man in his head.

Witnesses alerted the police department about the use of force.

Orangeburg DPS Chief Mike Adams said he reviewed video of the incident the next morning and immediately called the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) to investigate.

That investigation is ongoing.

The officer was white and the man on which he used force was Black, Adams added.

Wednesday, the Orangeburg DPS Use of Force Committee met and decided to fire the officer after they determined the officer’s actions were “outside the scope of the use of force policy.”

“The actions don’t represent Orangeburg or the men and women in service,” Orangeburg Mayor Michael Butler said. “The city is working with SLED, and we expect the investigation to be concluded next week.”

WIS talked to the victim at his home Friday. He said he went to the hospital and he’s not doing too well right now, but he wouldn’t say much more.

The officer who was fired did have a number of years of experience on the force, the chief said.

“This incident could cause hurt in our community, but we want people to know this won’t be tolerated in any fashion,” City Administrator Sidney Evering said.

WIS has requested any video of the officer’s use of force through the Freedom of Information Act. Right now, officials aren’t releasing video, saying it’s under investigation.

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