Columbia police intelligence analyst charged with DUI, requests chief show up at jail

Published: Jan. 17, 2014 at 8:54 PM EST|Updated: Feb. 25, 2014 at 7:03 PM EST
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A still image taken from a camera mounted in a SCDPS cruiser. (Source: SCDPS)
A still image taken from a camera mounted in a SCDPS cruiser. (Source: SCDPS)
Bridget Caffery (Source: Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center)
Bridget Caffery (Source: Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center)

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - A civilian employee of the Columbia Police Department was arrested and charged with DUI three days after Christmas, according to the South Carolina Department of Public Safety.

According to a SCDPS incident report, 24-year-old Bridget N. Caffery was charged with DUI, 1st offense on December 28 after nearly causing a collision near a driver's license checkpoint at SC 277 and Parklane Road.

Troopers reported a strong odor of alcohol coming from Caffery's SUV as they approached the vehicle just after 1 a.m.

Caffery, who lives in Columbia, told troopers she was coming from downtown and only had two drinks, the report stated.

After troopers decided Caffery had failed a field sobriety test, she was arrested and charged.

While being questioned in a patrol vehicle, Caffery is heard on videotape asking a trooper to have a former Columbia police chief and current interim chief be notified of her arrest.

"Wherever you're taking me to, could you please have Chief Ruben Santiago, [RCSD] Inspector [Randy] Scott and... [inaudible] show up?" said Caffery. The trooper told her he cannot force them to show up and that he'd have to check with his supervisors.

"Please tell them that Bridget Caffery is the one that you arrested," said Caffery.

Columbia Police Department spokesperson Jennifer Timmons says Santiago was made aware of the incident "a day or so later" and did not go to the jail the morning of the incident.

Caffery later begins breathing very heavily and has trouble speaking. Troopers do what they can to help control her breathing and eventually transport her to jail where she refused a breath test.

Caffery is listed as an intelligence analyst on the department's website. Job duties for an intel analyst include studying criminal relationships, charting criminals, looking into organized crime, and working with officers and investigators who deal with confidential informants.

Persons holding the position are not normally police officers and do not visit crime scenes or examine physical evidence, according to the department.

Timmons said Caffery's employment status has not changed since the arrest. She has been with the department for approximately two years.

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