FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 15, 2011
Manchester State Forest Employee is Agency’s Newest Cop
(Columbia, SC)- The South Carolina Forestry Commission’s newest law enforcement officer is now on duty at Manchester State Forest. James Douglas is the first employee from the Forestry Commission’s to graduate from the Criminal Justice Academy’s new 12-week curriculum. Previously, the program was nine weeks in length.
As a Forestry Commission law enforcement officer, Mr. Douglas will keep Manchester State Forest safe for visitors, investigate crimes, enforce hunting and fishing laws, and enforce the forest’s ban on alcohol and illegal substances.
These duties are added to Mr. Douglas’ already busy schedule. As an experienced forester, he’ll continue with timber marking and sales duties, participate in prescribed fire operations at Manchester. Mr. Douglas, who is 28 years old, numbers among the Forestry Commission’s statewide roster of wildfire suppression personnel. He also has a strong background in forest health issues having served the Commission as a southern pine beetle forester.
Commission law enforcement officers complete rigorous training while at the Criminal Justice Academy. Coursework includes firearms training, pursuit driving, defensive tactics, and physical fitness. Academic training includes criminal law, search and seizure, and arrest procedures. Duly sworn, SCFC officers hold the same powers as any law enforcement officer in South Carolina and hold statewide jurisdiction, not just on state lands.
Located in Sumter and Clarendon counties, Manchester State Forest consists of 28,680 acres of forestland interspersed with swamps and bays. Manchester boasts a number of recreational opportunities. The Commissions state forest system is entirely self-supporting with 25 percent of forest revenue returned to local schools in lieu of property taxes.
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For more information, call Scott Hawkins at (803) 896-8820.
The SC Forestry Commission’s mission is to protect and develop South Carolina’s forest resource
For every $1.00 invested by SC in the Commission, the industry produces more than $1,800.00 of economic impact.