SC spent $17M last year to defend officers or pay claims

GREENVILLE, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina taxpayers are spending millions of dollars a year addressing alleged misdeeds by law officers or detention officials including excessive force and civil rights violations.

The Greenville News reports ( ) the state last year spent $17 million to defend officers or pay claims in hundreds of cases. Most of the hundreds of complaints involving law enforcement agencies, detention centers, jails or prisons last year were concluded without claimants receiving any money.

South Carolina Sheriff’s Association executive director Jarrod Bruder said lawsuits and insurance claims are a fact of life for law enforcement and other professionals.

State Rep. Todd Rutherford is a lawyer who has handled complaints against law officers. The Columbia Democrat says the government makes it very hard for victims of official misconduct to collect damages.

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