Levi Rickert, editor-in-chief in Native Condition. Discussion »
On the Thursday prior to Labor Day, Charleston County Sheriff Al Canon dispatched two of his deputies along with a South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division officer to travel to Oklahoma from South Carolina.
The purpose of the trip is still somewhat nebulous, but it was tied to the ongoing bitter Veronica Brown custody battle.
“It was decided to send the two deputies and the SLED Agent (SC State Law Enforcement Division) to Oklahoma in light of hearings that are coming up in the near future,”
Sheriff Canon responded in an email, when asked by the Native News Network.
Apparently, South Carolina law enforcement leadership does not have faith in the Cherokee Nation tribal marshals or other Oklahoma law enforcement to handle custody hearings in a civil manner.
Earlier this week, in fine journalism, Charleston television station Live 5 News WCSC reported that it cost the tax payers of South Carolina more than $9,000 for costs associated with the holiday weekend trip.
Actually, the three officers were gone for nine days. They left on August 29 and returned on September 7.
Live 5 News obtained the Oklahoma trip costs by filing a Freedom of Information Act request with the Charleston County Sheriff's Office. Here is the Live 5 News' breakdown of expenses:
Airline tickets $2,578.00
Baggage check $75.00
Rental car and gas $1,458.28
Airport parking (Charleston International) $150.00
While in Oklahoma, the three racked up $1,036.08 in overtime and $395 in holiday pay on Labor Day.
The total cost of the trip for taxpayers is $9,355.96.
Perhaps, the folks in South Carolina have tax dollars to waste.
Where I live, every tax dollar is precious these days. About two and half years ago, I was appointed by the mayor in my hometown to sit with others on a transformation committee to discuss sustainability in a climate of decreasing tax revenue. In other words, we were there see how we can make better use of our tax dollars in our city. In one of our meetings, our city police chief came in and discussed how his department was trying to make good on every tax dollar appropriated to his department.
Then again, I don't live in South Carolina. Perhaps, they have tax dollars to waste.
The non-Native South Carolina adoptive couple has exhausted various legal means to obtain Cherokee citizen Veronica Brown, who turns four years old this Sunday. During the nine days the three officers were in Oklahoma, there were numerous hearings at various courts in various parts of Oklahoma.
So, it is nothing short of ludicrous the South Carolina law enforcement leadership would approve such a trip.
I realize the South Carolina non-Native adoptive couple has worked to turn their part of this Indian trafficking scheme camouflaged as an adoption into a media circus. But to see that law enforcement bought is nothing short of appalling.
Perhaps, Sheriff Canon has watched "Smokey and the Bandit" too many times and thinks you still need to run around the country chasing the bandit. Well, then again, Dusten Brown is not a bandit.
The $9,355.96 price tag to send the three law enforcement officers should have the good South Carolina taxpayers asking: "For what?"
posted September 12, 2013 6:00 am edt