Ever since our website exposed an ongoing criminal investigation into hundreds of thousands of dollars in misappropriated funds at the Greenwood County (S.C.) Sheriff’s Office, the local newspaper – The Greenwood Index Journal – has done an excellent job keeping tabs on the growing scandal.
Last month, for example, the paper published an exclusive report detailing the extent to which the woman at the heart of the mushrooming mess – former GCSO administrator Sandi McAlister-Owens – appears to have subsidized her daughter’s beauty pageant career with taxpayer funds.
“Hotel stays in Columbia and Hartsville, paid for with Greenwood County Sheriff’s Office (GCSO) funds, correlate with beauty pageants a GCSO employee’s daughter participated in,” the paper reported.
And it wasn’t just the travel costs taxpayers were forced to subsidize …
“The Miss America pageant received $12,306.25 from GCSO funds, including four payments of $1,000, one payment of $1,900 and one payment of $3,817,” Index Journal reporter Scott J. Bryan revealed. “The Miss South Carolina pageant also received an enormous amount of funds from GCSO accounts – $11,376.85.”
It remains unclear at this point how much Greenwood Sheriff Tony Davis knew about his associate’s alleged theft – which is said to total more than $300,000 – but source close to the investigation tell FITS he is “neck deep” in the scandal.
At the very least, Davis and his deputies were publicly supportive of the pageant career of Owens’ daughter, posing for photos in various pageant programs.
Take a look …
(Click to enlarge)
This may not wind up being South Carolina’s most expensive law enforcement scandal, but it’s clearly one of the most ridiculous … and embarrassing. Let’s hope the notoriously slack S.C. State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) gets off its backside and holds someone accountable for this mess.
In the meantime, props to The Index Journal for doing its job … a welcome departure from the journalistic norm in the Palmetto State.