In South Carolina, law enforcement officers must go through training and become certified through classes offered at the state's Criminal Justice Academy near Columbia. Those of you who travel the interstates from city to city around the state have probably noticed the proliferation of law enforcement vehicles from various departments, all heading towards Columbia. Now you know where a lot of them are headed.
As of late, there are concerns in the state's law enforcement community that the present system may be breaking down, due to class overload, and that this backlog is affecting the ability of departments to get needed officers out of the classroom and on to the streets.
Having grown up in a law enforcement household (my father was sometimes a firearms instructor at "the academy" over the years), such issues are near and dear in the Blogland:
Charleston Police Chief Greg Mullen has 19 new officers coming on board during the next few months, but it could be a long while before some of them hit the streets to serve and protect.
That's because the state Criminal Justice Academy in Columbia is struggling to keep up with the demand for training new recruits, forcing police departments to wait months for classroom openings. At present, it's the only place in South Carolina for new officers to go.
Mullen wants to change that. He is proposing that Charleston lead the way in establishing a Lowcountry regional training academy to ease the state's burden and get new officers on the streets in a more timely fashion.
- Charleston Post and Courier
Thanks to Glenn Smith at the Post and Courier for a job well done on this story.