CONWAY, SC (WBTW) – The Horry County Police Department added ten new officers Wednesday.
Back in July, we told you the department had 17 vacancies. Now, Chief Joseph Hill says that number is down to six.
The department has seen its share of problems with lawsuits filed against high-ranking officers in the department and shortages with many leaving for better pay and better morale.
“If they know that their leadership is going to fight for them for compensation issues, then they’ll stay. If they know that their community supports them, and this community does, then they’ll stay,” said Hill.
Wednesday, Quintard Tucker stood with his fellow officers as he took the oath of honor and vowed to help move the department forward.
“Every department you go to faces scrutiny at some point in time. This is not one that’s singled out,” said Tucker.
He, like all of the other new officers, served another agency before joining the agency, and he plans to use his experience in law enforcement to help others in the department.
“The department will get by it just as any department will and you know everybody will move on,” said Tucker.
Hill credits the new leadership and new hire incentives where new certified officers are given a $1,000 signing bonus as key to their growth.
“Although it’s not much, it’s enough to say hey we care. We want good, qualified officers. Many applied, but we only chose the few you see in this room today because we only want the best of the best,” said Hill.
Typically, Hill says when the department hires new officers, they’ll then lose those officers to training at the academy for a few months. However, since all ten of the new hires are certified officers, they’re ready to get to work.
Here’s a list of the new hires, previous agency they served, number of years in law enforcement, and where they’ll serve in Horry County:
Patrolman Antonio Chestnut, Myrtle Beach PD, 1 year, West Precinct
Patrolman Chad Page, Marion Police Department, 2 years, West Precinct
Patrolman Jonathan Warren, Marion Police Department, 2 years, West Precinct
Patrolman Andrew LeGette, Pamplico Police Department, 4 years, West Precinct
Patrolman Quintard Tucker, Andrews Police Department, 25+ years, North Precinct
Patrolman Josiah Doyle, Loris Police Department, 1 year, North Precinct
Patrolman Joseph Davis, Marion County Sheriff Department, 3 years, South Precinct
Patrolman Matthew Hill, Society Hill Police Department, 10 years, North Precinct
Patrolman Thomas Moore, Nichols Police Department, 3 years, North Precinct
Patrolman Shanell Whitman, Loris Police Department, 1 year, Central Precinct