Police Chief: ‘This isn’t a CSI TV show’
COLUMBIA, S.C. (WOLO) — Columbia Police Chief Randy Scott says people are rushing to judgment regarding his department’s handling of a missing persons investigation-turned-apparent suicide. “This isn’t a CSI TV show,” the chief said, when asked why it took more than a week for officers to locate the body of Tom Sponseller, CEO and President of the South Carolina Hospitality Association. The man’s body was discovered ten days after he was reporting missing, in a locked room within a room on the lower level of a parking garage in downtown Columbia. It’s the same area where he parked everyday. It was employees of Sponseller’s, not officers, who located a suicide note that was locked away in his desk drawer. That note lead authorities back to the parking garage to search again, after three previous searches, which is when the body was discovered. Chief Scott says people should be leery of any law enforcement agency that boasts of doing everything ‘right’ in any investigation. He admits his officers have room for improvement and he plans to implement changes to prevent similar occurrences in the future.