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Oconee County Sheriff’s Office Becomes State Accredited Agency




(From L - R): Oconee County Sheriff Mike Crenshaw and Rock Hill Police Chief Chris Watts

(Walhalla, SC)-------------------------------------The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office has recently been recognized as an accredited law enforcement agency by the South Carolina Law Enforcement Accreditation Council.

 

Currently, there are 39 total law enforcement agencies in the state of South Carolina who are officially accredited agencies by the South Carolina Law Enforcement Accreditation Council.  Of those 39 agencies who are accredited, 13 of those are Sheriff’s Office in the state of South Carolina, which includes the Oconee County Sheriff’s Office. 

 

According to Sheriff Mike Crenshaw, the process for the Sheriff’s Office to attain accreditation began three years ago.   

 

Sheriff Crenshaw along with other employees attended the Accreditation Council’s hearing on March 8th in Columbia.  It was during that meeting that they learned that the Council had given their final approval for the Oconee County Sheriff’s Office to become an officially accredited agency by SCLEA.

 

“The main purpose of accreditation is to demonstrate that the Oconee County Sheriff’s Office was following and in compliance with the best law enforcement standards,” says Oconee County Sheriff Mike Crenshaw.  “This demonstrates to our citizens that their Sheriff’s Office is providing them the most professional law enforcement service possible.  In order to do that and to become accredited, we had to demonstrate to the Accreditation Council, by proof of compliance, that we were meeting the applicable standards as set forth in accreditation.”

 

On January 9th thru January 10th of this year, two assessors were on-site at the Law Enforcement Center to review compliance standards and policy and procedures, as well as to tour the agency along with conducting a ride-a-long with a Deputy as well as review equipment. 

 

One of the advantages of Accreditation, according to Sheriff Crenshaw, will be the increased ability of the Oconee County Sheriff’s Office to be approved for grants which will potentially enable the Sheriff’s Office to address personnel and equipment needs. 

 

The South Carolina Law Enforcement Accreditation Program is an initiative of the South Carolina Police Chiefs’ Association and the South Carolina Sheriff’s Association.  The program is a voluntary program. 

 

The Accreditation is valid for three years at which time the Sheriff’s Office will again have to show documentation that the standards are being met on a continual basis in order to be re-accredited.

 

On April 2nd, Chief Chris Watts with the Rock Hill Police Department, who currently serves on the Accreditation Council, presented Sheriff Crenshaw the framed certification during the Oconee County Council meeting.   

 

 

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