While he's only been on the job a few days, Bluffton's new police chief Joey Reynolds is busy trying to get to know the community he's serving.
"Reaching out to the community. I'm meeting with all of the supervisors this week, all of the officers next week, getting out," said Reynolds. "I want to meet with community people, principals, business people. Just trying right now to gather information."
Reynolds says he has been visiting this area for years and is excited to lead the nationally accredited police department.
"We couldn't be happier to be able to move to a community we are familiar with and love and at the same time to be able to serve it in a professional capacity," said Reynolds.
He has spent over 30 years in law enforcement, first starting his career in the Palmetto State.
"Started with the sheriff's department in Sumter, SC as a dispatcher right out of high school. This is all I've ever done, worked through the uniform. I then had an opportunity to take a job in North Carolina working undercover for a sheriff's department. Did that for a few years. Then went to the state agency until 2003, when I was appointed police chief in Lanoir, North Carolina. Served there for eight years," said Reynolds.
In Bluffton, he is planning on concentrating on more community policing.
"The biggest thing I'd like to bring to the table is opening up the police department more to the community, be more transparent," said Reynolds.
Bluffton's former chief David McAllister resigned from the position a few months ago after a number of his officers filed law suits claiming discrimination and in one case that McAllister had shoved him.