State Department of Public Safety director Mark Keel said Thursday no disciplinary action will be taken against a state trooper who initially failed to write a speeding ticket for a SLED agent stopped while driving Gov. Mark Sanford on Tuesday.
The state trooper, Lance Cpl. R.S. Salter, later was given a verbal reminder of procedure by Keel after video of the traffic stop was viewed, Keel said during a Thursday news conference. The trooper failed to even write the driver a warning ticket documenting the stop as required by law.
And, belatedly, Salter also wrote the SLED agent, 43-year-old James Bernard Rawl, a speeding ticket Thursday morning, charging him four points on his driver's license and a $180 fine.
As in cases involving most drivers, a magistrate or other court officer could reduce the points and fine when the SLED agent appears in traffic court.
"Discretion is given to the officer whether to write a citation based on the circumstances," Keel said, adding that he did not think Salter's actions reflected badly on his agency's credibility.
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Keel said he took a look at the traffic-stop video after being alerted by the head of the governor's security detail. Sanford's driver was stopped Tuesday in the Upstate driving 85 mph in a 65-mph zone on Interstate 385 in Laurens.
When pulled over, the SLED agent put on his blue lights, got out and approached the state trooper's car.
"Once (the trooper) went to the car and confirmed who was in the car, there was nothing else to do," Keel said.
Keel said he has had no contact with Sanford about the incident.
"I said when I took over (the Department of Public Safety) we were going to be forthcoming. I'm going to do what I think is right," Keel said.
SLED director Reggie Lloyd said Rawl owed the trooper and Sanford an apology.