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New Ellenton officer loves small town police work

Sunday, June 29, 2014 6:21 PM
Last updated Monday, June 30, 2014 1:07 AM
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EDITOR’S NOTE: This profile is part of an ongoing series on area law enforcement officers.

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Cpl. Detroit Spires, one of six officers in the town on New Ellenton, S.C., has served on the force for seven years.  Jon-Michael Sullivan/Staff
Jon-Michael Sullivan/Staff
Cpl. Detroit Spires, one of six officers in the town on New Ellenton, S.C., has served on the force for seven years.

The New Ellenton Police Department is no Miami Vice, and that’s fine with Cpl. Detroit Spires.

“I really do enjoy the aspect of small town policing,” said Spires, 30. “You get to know people – get that community feel.”

It might be surprising then to hear that those cops who often engaged in large gun battles while cracking down on drug trafficking and prostitution in the 1980s television show Miami Vice are what inspired Spires to go into law enforcement.

“My whole life I’ve wanted to be a police officer,” Spires said. “I grew up watching all those wonderful shows like Miami Vice that make you think law enforcement is great.”

And it is great, just different.

“I couldn’t see myself doing anything else,” he said.

At 21, he started working at the Aiken County Detention Center. About two years later, he became one of six officers at the New Ellenton Police Department.

Chief Alesia Parks said Spires has been a good fit for the agency, bringing a young and energetic spirit to the force. He’s also curious, which can be very helpful.

“I’ve seen him grow (in his career) and he’s still growing,” she said of the 7-year member of the force.

Although it’s small, Spires said it offers him the opportunity to really know and work closely with residents instead of running from call to call like he would at a larger agency.

“We have everything you would in a larger agency,” he said, “except we’re compacted down to nine miles.”

A Southern boy at heart, the Jackson, S.C., native said he spends his time out of uniform hunting, fishing, riding motorcycles and, of course, spending time with his 18-month-old son.

“You have to have some sort of release after all the things you see (as a police officer),” Spires said.


AGE: 30

FAMILY: son, 18 months

WORK HISTORY: 7 years with the New Ellenton Police Department

LIFE BEFORE LAW: Planning on a position in law enforcement

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Common.sense 06/30/14 - 12:08 am
I am not a fan of the vest.

I am not a fan of the vest. Makes the "small town" Police look militarized.

bdouglas 06/30/14 - 08:50 am

Need that vest for writing all those speeding tickets in New Ellenton!

bclicious 06/30/14 - 09:29 am
okay , but . . .

First of all; love the Vest!

Second; good story. I bleed blue through and through.

Lastly; why the heck is this story in the Augusta Chronicle? New Ellenton is no where near the greater Augusta area.

Navy Gary
Navy Gary 06/30/14 - 10:47 am
Next Week

Next Week on "Gestapo Showcase"----> Roadblock Roundtree!! I'd like to see a piece on everyday citizens instead of cops all the time. How about a story on the guy who scoops crappe at the dog pound?

Sean Moores
Sean Moores 06/30/14 - 10:53 am

We are doing a series on law enforcement around the area.

bdouglas 06/30/14 - 02:51 pm

I appreciate the law enforcement stories, but will also echo what Navy Gary said...even if he may have been trying to be sarcastic. A series on ordinary people doing extraordinary work at ordinary jobs perhaps? There's a guy I see every single day who cleans the sidewalk and street between the VA valet parking area and MCG that comes to mind. Always seems cheerful when faced with a very mundane job, but also always does it very well. Same goes for the crossing guard at 15th St and Harper/Pope. Think about it!

jimmymac 06/30/14 - 03:57 pm

This small town would be light years better off if they shut down the crack houses instead of spending all their time writing tickets for going a few miles over their ridiculously low speed limits.

Sweet son
Sweet son 06/30/14 - 07:05 pm
@bclicious good idea!

There are many who need to be recognized for their work and their efforts for the community. Kinda like 'Time to Care' over at Channel 12.

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