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City Council calls off wreck meeting

May 6, 2010 12:57:00 PM - thestate.com

Columbia City Council has canceled its Friday morning meeting where members had planned to discuss the investigation of Mayor-elect Steve Benjamin's April 21 car wreck.

Council had wanted to ask the S.C. Highway Patrol to take over after hearing from city residents who are concerned about the fairness of the investigation. Benjamin campaigned on a platform of promoting strong public safety and was endorsed by local police and firefighters associations.

Council had instructed City Manager Steve Gantt to ask Mark Keel, the highway patrol director, if it was possible for the investigation to be handed off, Councilwoman Tameika Isaac Devine said. However, Keel reportedly told Gantt that it was too late for his agency to lead the investigation, Devine said.

"It's just been too long," she said. "They are willing to review the findings of the police department once their investigation is over."

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