Crime & Courts

Beaufort County deputy returns to policing after domestic violence charge dismissed, officials say

What to do if you think a friend might be a victim of domestic violence

Vicki Bourus, executive director of the Family Justice Center of Georgetown and Horry Counties, gives some advice for those wondering what to do if a loved one might be a domestic violence victim.
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Vicki Bourus, executive director of the Family Justice Center of Georgetown and Horry Counties, gives some advice for those wondering what to do if a loved one might be a domestic violence victim.

More than three months after the arrest of a Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office deputy, a domestic violence charge against him has been dismissed.

Sgt. Jacob Scott was arrested by the Port Royal Police Department on March 9 and charged with second-degree domestic violence following a domestic dispute with his girlfriend in their apartment.

The Sheriff’s Office immediately suspended Scott with pay, placed him on “limited duty” and conducted an internal investigation, Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Maj. Bob Bromage said at the time.

A Beaufort County judge dismissed the domestic violence charge against Scott at a preliminary hearing, a report from the South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy shows.

It was not immediately clear what factors the judge considered when dismissing the charge against Scott.

Following the dismissal, the Criminal Justice Academy voted Monday to reinstate Scott’s license to be a law enforcement officer, academy spokesperson Florence McCants said.

Scott remained on limited duty as of Wednesday, Bromage said.

The March arrest

The night Scott was charged, his girlfriend told officers he threw a baby gate at her, threw her on the floor and bent her arms behind her like police do when arresting people, according to an initial incident report from the Port Royal Police Department.

She said her son witnessed some of the fighting before it became violent and that Scott had shoved and threatened her in the past, the report said.

Days after Scott’s arrest, his girlfriend told police she wanted to recant her statement, according to supplemental report. She wanted the charges dropped, she said, adding “they probably should have both gone to jail.” The initial investigation noted that Scott and his girlfriend both “appeared to be intoxicated to some degree.”

David Travis Bland won the South Carolina Press Association’s 2017 Judson Chapman Award for community journalism. As The State’s crime, police and public safety reporter, he strives to inform communities about crimes that affect them and give deeper insight into victims, the accused and law enforcement. He studied history with a focus on the American South at the University of South Carolina.
Lana Ferguson has covered crime, police, and other news for The Island Packet & Beaufort Gazette since June 2018. Before coming to the Lowcountry, she worked for publications in her home state of Virginia and graduated from the University of Mississippi, where she was editor of the college’s daily newspaper.
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