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We’ve always thought City of Columbia, S.C. police chief Randy Scott was a genuinely nice guy, but no amount of interpersonal good will can undo the fact this was a terrible year for his department.  Not only did the Columbia Police Department (CPD) screw the pooch on a high-profile disappearance-turned-suicide, but one of the city’s major downtown retail centers has become home to all sorts of bloody lawlessness.

Of course this is South Carolina – where the repeated demonstration of incompetence in a taxpayer funded position is not only tolerated, but praised.

To wit, Scott received the “2012 City Officer of the Year Award” earlier this year at a luncheon hosted by the U.S. Attorney’s office (ch-ching) at the Fort Jackson Officers’ Club (ch-ching).

And of course his longtime leg-running buddy Steve Benjamin – who was likely the impetus for Scott receiving this honor – was all about showing him the love.

“Chief Scott has built a first-class law enforcement agency for the people of this city,” Benjamin said. “Under his leadership, the Columbia Police Department is smarter, stronger, friendlier and more effective than ever before. This award underlines that fact and I couldn’t be more proud.”

Sheesh …

Of course from Benjamin’s perspective …