A new scholarship at the University of South Carolina Aiken will honor two Aiken police officers who were killed in the line of duty.
The Sandy Rogers and Scotty Richardson Memorial Scholarship will be awarded annually to a student in the sociology program at USC Aiken, college officials said.
Preference will be given to students
pursuing a career in criminal justice and those with a financial need, a news release said.
“A group of family and friends have made the initial gift to create this scholarship in honor of these two heroes of the City of Aiken Public Safety Department,” said Dr. Deidre Martin, the vice chancellor for University Advancement. “This scholarship will provide a lasting legacy to the memory of these two fine individuals.”
The university will hold a fundraiser for the scholarship at the Feb. 27 USC Aiken basketball game with Augusta State University.
Richardson, a master public safety officer for the city of Aiken, died in December 2011 after a shootout with a suspect after a traffic stop on Brandt Court. Police said Stephon Morrell Carter, then 19, of Aiken, pulled a pistol and shot Richardson and another officer who was protected by his bulletproof vest.
Carter was wounded by police and captured. He was charged with murder and attempted murder and remains at the Aiken County Detention Center.
Just over a month later, Rogers, a master corporal and 27-year veteran of the force, was killed. Rogers was shot on the morning of Jan. 28 while investigating a suspicious vehicle near Aiken’s Eustis Park.
The suspect, Joshua Tremaine Jones, 27, was arrested later in Batesburg, S.C., and is also in the Aiken County Detention Center awaiting trial. Jones also faces murder charges in Georgia in the slaying of his girlfriend, Cayce Vice.
Aiken Public Safety Capt. David Turno said the scholarship is a fitting tribute to the two officers because of the department’s long association with USC Aiken.
“Aiken Public Safety is honored to have this scholarship in memory of Scotty and Sandy, both of whom had strong ties to USC Aiken,” Turno said.
Richardson was a graduate of the university, and Rogers’ mother was a retired educator at the school, he said. Turno also said that Rogers’ partner, Frances Williams, is a police officer for the university.
“The Aiken community continues to show its support of Aiken Public Safety and its officers for their hard work and dedication, to include remembering our officers who gave their lives to the citizens of Aiken,” he said. “For this we as a department are truly grateful.”