NEWBERRY COUNTY — A Newberry County Detention Center Officer was terminated after he was charged in Richland County with solicitation, as part of Operation Full Armor.
Craig Gene Douglas was employed with the Newberry County Detention Center, his job was to take inmates to their job site. Sheriff Lee Foster said he was terminated immediately upon notification from Richland County, which was the night of his arrest on July 10.
“Whether you are a full-fledged deputy or a Detention Center employee, you should know the law and know that was illegal. Even though he was off duty at the time, and not using any kind of county equipment, it is still a violation of the law and still against our ethical policies,” Foster said.
According to the incident report from the Richland County Sheriff’s Office, Douglas propositioned an undercover officer for sex. When Douglas arrived at the agreed upon location, he was arrested by members of the Richland County Sheriff’s Department Fugitive Task Force.
This arrest was part of Operation Full Armor, Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott announced on Thursday, July 26, the success of Operation Full Armor. This was a joint operation with the South Carolina Attorney General’s office, U.S. Secret Service, the Homeland Security, U.S. Marshals and seven sheriff’s departments across the state, in addition to the Richland County Sheriff’s Department.
Operation Full Armor was intended to identify and arrest child predators (travelers), buyers of commercial sex (Johns), and sellers of commercial sex (prostitutes). Over four days, undercover law enforcement officers, using online personas of young girls, corresponded with 12 travelers who were arrested for communicating with and then traveling to a location to have sexual contact with the young girls. Many of these individuals arrested admitted to prior sexual assaults and/or talking to young girls online and on apps every day.
Charges range from soliciting the young girls for sex and requesting the young girls send nude photos of themselves, the men sending nude photos of themselves to the young girls, and then arriving at a location for the purpose of having sex. This operation led to the highest number of arrest of travelers during a single operation in South Carolina.
A second goal of the operation was to target the buyers and sellers of commercial sex to combat human trafficking. A total of 15 “Johns” were arrested for soliciting sex from an undercover deputy and five prostitutes were arrested.
Investigator continued to follow leads developed during the operation, which have led to six additional arrests of child predators and the identification of several others that remain under investigation.
Reach Andrew Wigger at 803-276-0625 ext. 1867 or on Twitter @TheNBOnews.