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Aiken Police Chief Suspended 3 Days for Management Failure


Aiken’s top cop has just completed three days of suspension without pay for a failure of management, the city manager told The Jail Report.

Chief Charles Barranco will also serve up to six months of probation for a personnel action that City Manager John Klimm said was the result of  “deficiencies in management.”

The new city manager told a local TV station that ADPS employees left their shift and failed to file a report that a woman was in jail. The same woman was later reported missing, even though she was in jail.

Klimm said the police chief notified him three days after an incident, and the family filed a complaint with the public safety department.

“Chief Barranco made me aware of the complaint,” Klimm said.

The city manager notified the city council of his actions in suspending Barranco. The suspension was served Tuesday through Thursday, and he returned to work Friday (Aug. 14).

Barranco did not return phone calls seeking comment, but ADPS released this comment from the chief this afternoon:

“As the Chief of Aiken Public Safety, I have the privilege of leading 135 dedicated public servants who serve our great city and answer some 40,000 calls for service per year. With that privilege, comes great responsibility and I am responsible for every single decision made by this department. One of the core tenets of leadership is to give credit, yet accept responsibility, and the buck will always stop with me.”



The Jail Report has filed an open records request seeking a copy of the discipline against the chief. Klimm said Barranco had acted professionally in dealing with the suspension and in taking ownership of the mistake and corrective action.

“He’s fixing the problem and will move on,” Klimm said.

The suspension comes less than a year after Barranco was recognized for excellence in law enforcement. Last September, he was given the Strom Thurmond Award for Excellence in Law Enforcement.

Stay tuned…


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Greg Rickabaugh
Greg Rickabaugh
Greg Rickabaugh is an award-winning crime reporter in the Augusta-Aiken area with experience writing for The Augusta Chronicle, The Augusta Press and serving as publisher of The Jail Report. Rickabaugh is a 1994 graduate of the University of South Carolina and has appeared on several crime documentaries on the Investigation Discovery channel.
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