CHARLESTON, SC — State officials have stripped the badge of a Berkeley County deputy who once beat a suspect to death while working as a police officer for another agency.
The South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy cited a troubling history of excessive-force complaints at law enforcement agencies in its decision to ban Roudro Gourdine from law enforcement.
Gourdine was acquitted of voluntary manslaughter in 1988 in the death of Hollie Chestnut, who was suspected of breaking into a car.
His attorneys argued that he was not responsible for his actions because he suffered a loss of sensory perception or memory due to the stress of the situation. Gourdine never denied killing Chestnut.
Academy officials examined that case, as well as an incident in 2001 in Andrews in which Gourdine was accused of breaking a suspect’s collarbone.
“We felt that there was an excessive-force issue in both situations,” academy director William Neill said. Gourdine can appeal the academy’s decision to the state Department of Public Safety.