ORANGEBURG, S.C. — Chief Chandra Gibbs of the Orangeburg County Sheriff's Office says the joint community policing annex station, which opened in August at the intersection of Goff Avenue and Buckley Street, provides the community with more opportunities.
"It proves to just be a space where there's a centralized location that we can all go to," said Gibbs. "It's there and that even if it is that you're using it by parking outside. You may not necessarily have gone in but that's just where you've parked or that's been a meeting space where you've collaborated with another officer in the county."
The substation is a shared entity with the Department of Public Safety, the County Sheriff's Office, Claflin University and South Carolina State University.
Claflin student Khairi Jackson says the building provides a sense of safety.
"It's definitely reassuring because growing up you hear a lot of bad things about HBCUs," said Jackson. "Especially when it comes to safety so it's definitely reassuring, so it helps me feel more at home... it's definitely helps one hundred percent."
Chief Gibbs said having officers in this central location also allows residents to interact with law enforcement outside of emergencies.
"It's also a way where you can have those one-on-one interactions where people are able to see law enforcement officers working together," said Chief Gibbs. "It provides them an opportunity where they're able to come up and ask questions and have that one on one engagement when there is not a heightened situation that's going on."
Jackson said he would like more involvement from officers at the substation.
"We're still having problems around campus and on campus," said Jackson. "I feel like if they were involved and they had more hands on action then it would feel more safe."
The Department of Public Safety has not used the station. But it will be manned as needed.