Chester police officer accused of inappropriately touching woman fired

- A Chester police officer has been fired after he was accused of inappropriately touching a law enforcement officer's wife. 

On Wednesday, Chester Police Chief Eric Williams told FOX 46 that he made the decision to fire Officer James (Jimmy) Johnson following allegations that he groped the wife of a Union County Sheriff's Deputy at a restaurant in Union, SC. 

According to the police report, Deputy Brandon Vaughan received a call from his wife on Dec. 2 stating that while she was out to dinner with her daughter and daughter-in-law at El Poblano at 504 N. Duncan Bypass in Union, Johnson-- who was highly intoxicated-- came over to the table and sat next to her.

She says as the conversation went on Johnson began inappropriately touching her, rubbing her leg, moving his hand towards her inner thigh and further upwards. As a result, she grabbed a butter knife and stabbed at Johnson's hand to get him to move away.

“There was an investigation. There were witnesses there and like I said before the facts and the findings were verified and confirmed and helped us make the decision that we made," said Chief Williams.

All three of the women say they finally convinced Johnson to leave the table and go back to the Karaoke area outside where he had come from. 

Deputy Vaughn, along with a Union Police Sergeant went to the restaurant where the victim, her daughter and daughter-in-law all gave written statements of the incident. Security footage was also reviewed, and Johnson was eventually charged with assault and battery in the 3rd degree.

Chief Williams says after investigating the allegations and speaking to witnesses he felt the officers actions were "unbecoming of the standards of the Chester Police Department.

“Given the climate of current day and things of this nature happening there is a standard for civilians. Outside that standard, we do have a standard in law enforcement that is a higher standard," said Chief Williams.

Johnson was also fired from the Union County Sheriff's Office on December 6 exactly one year ago for personnel issues and policy violations. 

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