HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – Horry County paid over $60,000 into the state's retirement system so that Horry County Police Chief Saundra Rhodes could enjoy full retirement status and benefits after her abrupt announcement that she was retiring, according to documents obtained by WMBF News.
Rhodes' last day as Chief of Police for the Horry County Police Department was May 6, 2016. She announced her retirement in a news release on April 25.
According to documents obtained by WMBF News through a Freedom of Information Act request, the Horry County Government paid $61,145.37 for the remaining one year and seven months of service that Chief Rhodes would have had to have served in order to receive full retirement benefits.
Rhodes' retirement comes as several individuals in the department are under investigation, including a detective who was fired after a 2015 investigation revealed sustained allegations of sexual harassment, and another detective who allegedly failed to investigate over 80 cases fully or appropriately.
Horry County Administrator, Chris Eldridge, has appointed Deputy Chief Kelvin Waites as Interim Chief, according to a news release from the county government.