The mayor of the Orangeburg County town of Norway is without the official vehicle he has been using.
The South Carolina Department of Public Safety seized the vehicle and gave it to the Orangeburg County Sheriff’s Department. The Dodge Charger, bullet-proof vest, pistol and taser were purchased by the town in 2009 through a law enforcement grant with the U.S. Justice Department. They were to be used for criminal justice purposes.
Norway has been without a police department since August 2011. That’s when former mayor Cindy Williams sent a letter to the state’s criminal justice academy stating that Norway disbanded its police force because the town couldn’t afford the officers. Preacher, who had been the town’s former police chief, kept the vehicle and other equipment.
In January, he was appointed town constable just days after taking the oath of office as mayor. But he resigned the constable position amid a State Law Enforcement Division investigation into an incident where he pulled over a state trooper for speeding. He was later arrested for his actions during that traffic stop. A trial date has not been set.
Public Safety officials say that, if Norway re-establishes a law enforcement agency, the vehicle and other equipment will be returned.