Former Westminster Police Chief Charged - WSPA.com

Former Westminster Police Chief Charged

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Former Westminster Police Chief Scott Bannister was charged with embezzlement, forgery, and misconduct in office. Former Westminster Police Chief Scott Bannister was charged with embezzlement, forgery, and misconduct in office.
WESTMINSTER, S.C. -

A former Upstate police chief accused embezzling more than $100,000 has been charged following a state investigation Monday.

Former Westminster Police Chief Scott Bannister was charged with embezzlement, forgery, and misconduct in office.

Bannister was served with warrants at the Oconee Law Enforcement Center in Walhalla, city officials add.

Bannister turned in his resignation last July after city officials asked the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division to investigation the city's police department in connection with suspected criminal actions discovered in a departmental review.

He was released Monday afternoon on a $90,000 bond.

It's not often someone from the small city of Westminster bumps into someone they don't know.

But to many people former police chief Bannister was the exception.

"I've been working here for 17 years and I never saw him one time," Daniel Keaton said.

To those who did know the chief during his time in the city - like former city councilman Danny Duncan - the charges were unexpected.

"It's just a shock and I say a lot of times that nothing shocks me any more but this one kind of did," Duncan said.

Duncan was one of the councilmen who voted to hire Duncan. He expects the city will not allow something like the crimes alleged in this case to happen again.

"I think there's so many things in place, there are so many checks and balances on everything they do," Duncan said.

The city's administrator wouldn't comment on an active case.

The mayor also declined comment but said the new police chief Dean Awalt is doing a good job.

People in town also seem pleased with the change.

"Everybody seems friendlier, it's just a different vibe from the police officers. I just think it's great for the town," Keaton said.

The 10th Circuit Solicitor's office is now handling this case.

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