Columbia, SC (WLTX) - There's a bit of controversy surrounding Columbia's Interim Police Chief Ruben Santiago and a comment made on social media.
It has to do with Facebook and a post the chief put on there Thursday night.
Here's what happened.
Thursday, Columbia police charged a man with having $40,000 worth of marijuana in his possession. The department put the man's mug shot and a news release on their Facebook page.
Somebody commented on the Facebook post and said police should be doing more in Five Points rather than bust people for marijuana. Santiago responded, telling the Facebook user that his department has arrested all of the violent offenders in Five Points. The interim chief went on to say, "thank you for sharing your views and giving us reasonable suspicion to believe you might be a criminal. We will work on finding you."
A number of people on Facebook took those comments as a threat.
WLTX contacted Columbia police Friday, and they confirm Santiago admitted to writing the post, but they tell us his post was in no way meant to be offensive or malicious. We were told the comment was intended to put would be criminals on notice and the department insists the interm chief wasn't threatening anyone.
They also told us that Facebook posts can often times be misconstrued and misinterpreted.
We're also told Santiago has reached out to the man who felt threatened to explain that he didn't mean the post as a threat.