Columbia city park ranger suspended after assault on minors

nophillips@thestate.comSeptember 27, 2013 

Edwin Vincent, 65

— A Columbia city park ranger has been suspended after he was accused of fondling two teenaged girls’ breasts.

Edwin Vincent, 65, of Columbia was charged Sept. 18, a Wednesday, with second-degree assault and battery, according to a Columbia Police Department incident report. He was released Saturday from the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center on a $5,000 bond for the misdemeanor charge.

Vincent reported to work on Monday and was suspended Tuesday after city officials learned of his arrest, said city spokeswoman Leisha Utsey.

For now, Vincent is being paid through his earned vacation time. When that leave time runs out, he will be suspended without pay until the charges are adjudicated, Utsey said.

The assault that Vincent has been accused of did not happen at a city park or while he was at work.

Two girls reported that Vincent told them he needed to perform breast exams to check for lumps and acne, the incident report said. They were ordered to take off their clothes and submit to the exam.

A police investigator tracked down Vincent at Riverfront Park where he was working and asked him to come to police headquarters. There, Vincent admitted to touching the girls, the incident report said.

Reach Phillips at (803) 771-8307.

The State is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service