Letter to the editor: Sumter's crime rate is underreported


I have been providing evidence to the mayor and city council for over a year that Sumter's Police Department has a culture of not doing police reports for criminal activity. They have done nothing but lie about the facts of my complaints and have told me not to contact them anymore. The police have continually refused to do police reports for me for large thefts, and other people have told me that they have had the same problem. Every time, after much arguing and complaining, the police end up doing a report and agree that one should have been done earlier. I have been wondering what the significance of the police report was but assumed it had something to do with local crime statistics. The other day I discovered that SLED requires that all local law enforcement criminal incidence reports are to be reported directly to SLED under 73-30 (Uniform Crime Reporting). Our Police Department is obviously circumventing this law by refusing to do reports, which is what occurred when I have attempted to report criminal activity. Our city council has a direct responsibility to oversee the police department. Our local politicians have refused to do anything. This behavior has accelerated the crime in this community and has taken all deterrence to commit crime away. This is why we are hearing about more violent crimes which are occurring every week. We as citizens need to hold these politicians accountable if we want to live in a community that is not riddled by crime.