Off-duty deputy charged with assault in Columbia

cwinston@thestate.comOctober 11, 2013 

— A Richland County sheriff’s deputy is suspended without pay after he allegedly assaulted a woman at a Columbia restaurant.

Deputy Allen Derrick, 49, a retired Columbia fire fighter and an employee of the sheriff’s department for 14 years, was charged with assault following an incident at the Buffalo Wild Wings restaurant on Devine Street.

Derrick, who was off-duty at the time of the incident, was arrested by the Columbia Police Department. He was cooperative during the arrest.

According to a Columbia Police Department incident report, Derrick approached an upset 23-year-old woman who did not know and tried to console her. The victim did not show interest in speaking to Derrick, and the two began to argue.

Derrick went to his vehicle, bringing back his handcuffs, and began to assault the woman, according to the report. Derrick allegedly slammed her onto a metal table, breaking it. He then held her to the ground against her will. The report said that Derrick had a loaded weapon on his side and had been consuming alcoholic beverages throughout the altercation

Several other customers recorded the incident on cell phones. When Columbia Police officers arrived at the scene, Derrick refered to the victim as his prisoner and she was not to be released. However, it was determined that Derrick did not have arresting authority.

Meanwhile, Columbia police officers reviewed the cell phone video. At one point, Derrick apparently told the woman, who lives at Fort Jackson, that “This is how Marines deal with soldiers.”

Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott and Interim Columbia Police Chief Ruben Santiago are investigating possible violations of policies and procedures. The CPD consulted with the 5th Circuit Solicitor’s Office at the time of arrest and will continue to do so, according to a release from the sheriff’s department.

Lott and Santiago will meet next week to discuss the incident.

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