WALTERBORO, S.C. (WSAV) – The sheriff of Colleton County has placed himself on a leave of absence after he was arrested on a domestic violence charge.
According to the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED), the incident involving Sheriff Andy Strickland happened Thursday night.
SLED says he punched a woman multiple times in the face and took two household members’ cell phones, preventing them from calling for help. While trying to flee, authorities say Strickland also damaged a vehicle he was driving.
The sheriff was arrested Saturday and charged with one count of Domestic Violence in the second degree.
Monday evening, News 3 received the following statement from Strickland:
For the last seven years the great citizens of Colleton County have placed their trust in me. As Sheriff, out of love, and respect for my employees, and the citizens of Colleton County, I have placed myself on a leave of absence. Effective immediately. This is standard policy within our office.
Chief Deputy, Buddy Hill, is someone I’ve always placed great trust in. He will continue to provide due diligence to the citizens of our community during my absence. This time will allow me to heal, and self-reflect on myself. I will strive to be stronger, and better at serving the citizens of Colleton, and my employees upon returning.
This case will be prosecuted by the 14th Circuit Solicitor’s Office.
Back in September, Strickland was accused of misusing taxpayer money to pay for a hotel room for his children at a law enforcement conference.