Joint substation opens in Orangeburg for local law enforcement

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Published: Aug. 24, 2023 at 10:17 PM EDT
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ORANGEBURG, S.C. (WIS) - The City of Orangeburg has a new police substation after partnering with four different law enforcement agencies.

Designated the Joint Community Policing Annex, the building officially opened Thursday morning for deputies and officers to use when needed.

The City of Orangeburg said the concept was proposed by its Department of Public Safety Chief (DPS), Charles Austin, in response to a growing population.

“It’s not going to be staffed on a 24/7 basis. We will have personnel in and out of this office. It will be available to each jurisdiction. The personnel who will utilize it will come in to write reports or come in to meet citizens regarding concerns. We will be able to do that,” said Chief Austin during Thursday’s press conference.

After he drafted the idea approximately one year ago, ODPS sat down with campus police across Claflin and South Carolina State University to find out how their agencies could intensity safety.

With the idea in mind, SC State volunteered a building on its property to act as a police mini-station for local agencies. This includes the Orangeburg County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO), ODPS, SC State PD, and Claflin DPS.

“To be able to extend the work that we’re doing with South Carolina State University, Orangeburg City police, and Orangeburg County, it’s an exciting thing. We’re already working together. But to extend this out, it becomes that much more of a force multiplier,” said Claflin DPS Director Melvin Williams.

Located on the corner of Buckley Street and Goff Avenue, it’s across the street from where a 27-year-old was killed with two SC State students injured during a late-night shooting last year.

This March, the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) was called to SC State twice following shootings outside of the Hugine Suites student apartment complex. One student was injured.

The city tells WIS they want students and residents to feel safe and hope that a joint substation will afford that comfort.

“This is community policing in its purest form. When we bring together the various resources that are available to us, to include the community. So, I expect we’re going to begin seeing results by virtue of this presence,” concluded Chief Austin.

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