SLED opens criminal investigation into former Bluffton police officer

Updated: Jan. 22, 2020 at 1:00 PM EST
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BLUFFTON, S.C. (WTOC) - A South Carolina Law Enforcement division spokesman confirmed to WTOC the agency opened a criminal investigation into a former Bluffton police officer. The department terminated Robert Harman on Jan. 15.

The chief accused him of serious misconduct in a letter to the South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy. WTOC got the documents in a Freedom of Information Act request. The chief wrote that an internal investigation revealed Harman threw away evidence in a case involving a drug recognition expert, got in the way of the investigation, and had sexual relations with a person involved in the case. The chief wrote, “the investigation has resulted in his termination from our agency.”

The chief recommended the state’s criminal justice academy de-certify Robert Harman. He’s been with the department since July of 2015.

There is another noteworthy separation from Harman’s file. Bluffton police hired him 6 days after his resignation with the South Carolina Department of Public Safety in 2015. The reason given in the file is that he resigned pending the outcome of an investigation. The details of that case are not in his file.

SLED could not say how long the investigation into Harman would take.

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