Ridgeway Hires Ex-Trooper

RIDGEWAY – Following an executive session, Ridgeway Town Council voted unanimously Jan. 10 to hire Greg Miller as the Town’s newest part-time police officer.

Miller most recently served with the S.C. Highway Patrol (SCHP) as a trooper out of Chester County’s Troop 4. He was dismissed by the SCHP last October following his arrest on third-degree assault and battery charges against an ex-girlfriend in September.

According to a Richland County Sheriff’s Department report of the incident, deputies were called to a home on Sandpine Road on Sept. 17 where a woman said she had been choked by her ex-boyfriend of 12 years. She identified her assailant as 48-year-old Gregory Allen Miller, of Smallstown Road in Winnsboro. The victim said she had just recently ended her relationship with Miller. She said Miller was waiting for her at her home when she arrived and followed her inside, refusing to leave. The report states that Miller grabbed the woman’s shoulders and began shaking her, then grabbed her around the neck. The victim said Miller, while choking her, told her, “If you tell my wife, are you prepared to suffer the consequences?” and then left the home.

Deputies noted bruising on the woman’s neck, as well as on the right side of her face. Miller was arrested later that same day.

Miller was fired by the SCHP Oct. 5 and charged Oct. 15, according to reports. He had been with the SCHPS since 2007. Prior to that, he worked with the Chester Police Department in 2007, as a State Transit Police office from 2005-2006 and with the Fairfield County Sheriff’s Office from 2003-2005. In 2009, Miller was one of three final applicants for the then vacant job of Chief of Police in Ridgeway.

Efforts to reach Ridgeway Mayor Charlene Herring for comment just days after the meeting were unsuccessful. Ridgeway Councilman Donald Prioleau, who led the search for a part-time officer, said that as far as Town Council knew, no charges had officially been filed against Miller in the September incident.

“We didn’t want to get into something he hadn’t been charged for,” Prioleau said. “It could be true, or maybe not. He was a good police officer when he was there.”

Indeed, Miller’s name appears nowhere in the Richland County court systems, nor in the records of the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center, where Miller was reportedly booked and released on a personal recognizance bond Sept. 17. That would indicate, an officer at the detention center said Monday, that the charges were either dropped or had been expunged.

Prioleau said of the three applications the Town had for the job, Millers was by far the best.

Council also voted to renew their contract with Loblolly Lawn and Grounds Maintenance Service to cut grass throughout the town. Loblolly charges the Town $750 per cut, plus a $25 fuel charge.

Council elected to table any resolution to join the Fairfield Regional Water Authority until an unspecified later date. A public hearing on the resolution held at last month’s meeting drew no members of the public. Council also tabled a vote to accept a bid for repairs to the Century House. Herring said the Town had received only two bids on the work and would therefore have to put the project out for bid again.

Council also said that they had failed to reach an agreement with restaurateurs Elisseos Mergianos and James Miller for a lease on the Old Town Hall building. Herring said after the meeting that the Town would now renew their search for a potential tenant for the restaurant.

“The Town needs a restaurant,” Herring said.

Council’s next scheduled meeting is Feb. 14 at 6:30 p.m.