A Richland County deputy has been fired and charged with misconduct in office after defacing a poster in a victim’s garage with a racial slur, Sheriff Leon Lott announced Tuesday.
Kaleb Broome, 25, responded to reports of a domestic dispute at a home on North Kings Way on Feb. 23. As deputies assisted the victim, Broome circled Nigeria on a poster map of Africa, turning it into a racial epithet, Lott said. He then stole a piece of double-sided tape from the victim.
“Today’s one of those days, as a sheriff and a cop, you just shake your head in amazement and disappointment,” Lott said.
Broome committed a criminal violation by taking the tape, and broke department rules by writing the slur. Though the tape was worth less than 10 cents, that did not change the fact that taking it was theft, the sheriff added.
“When he took that piece of tape, he crossed the line,” Lott said. “He tarnished the badge that we wear.”
A fellow deputy urged Broome not to do what he did, then reported his actions afterward, according to Lott. Broome turned himself in to investigators just before 2 p.m. Tuesday. He was released on a $10,000 personal recognizance bond.
Broome was with the Sheriff’s Department about two years.
If convicted, the charge of misconduct in office carries up to a year of imprisonment.
Broome was an offensive lineman at Georgia Military College who signed with the South Carolina Gamecocks as part of the 2011 recruiting class. He served in a backup role in his two seasons at the University of South Carolina, playing mostly on special teams in his senior season.