(Cayce, S.C.) – 11/5/2022 – For better or for worse, technology is the wave of the future. This statement applies to so many things that were once a certain way and have now changed or continue to modernize. Technology in the field of law enforcement is no different. From the days of rotator lightbars, the beloved Ford Crown Victoria, to the inception of hybrid model and electric model vehicles hitting fleets across the United States, the City of Cayce has made a significant technological advancement in their vehicle fleet.
Recently the Cayce Police Department unveiled their first fully marked Tesla Model 3 to the community. It is the first Model 3 in the Palmetto State and one of just 2 departments to have a Tesla (thus far).
Partnerships within the local community have played a huge role in this vehicle coming to fruition. A local dealership, 212 Motors donated the vehicle to the Cayce Police Department. Vehicle graphics were donated by another local business, Signarama. The charging station was provided courtesy of Lexington County School District 2 as this particular unit is assigned to a school resource officer for the department. In total, the agency incurred no cost to acquire, wrap, upfit, or place this vehicle in service thanks to these local partnerships.
Many people have asked or commented about the practicality of operating such a vehicle for law enforcement purposes. Comments, both positive and negative, appear anytime something “different” is added to a fleet that is considered “taboo” or not standard. However, realizing where this vehicle is assigned, and what its purpose is plays a huge role in understanding the functionality of the vehicle. Obviously, the Tesla is an attention getter. From the unique look of the vehicle to the bold wrap decals, people will certainly notice. It is perfectly fitted for the school district as students and residents alike will have a keen interest in checking out the new vehicle. It provides an avenue for both students and residents to stop and speak with the officer about the vehicle and check out something a little different than they are used to seeing in the average police fleet. This allows for community policing to be at the forefront of the interaction – something key in todays’ style of policing. In that same light, expect to see this vehicle at many events in the area, doing PR for the agency, and serving as a model for other departments when it comes to fleet modernization.
We want to extend our thanks to the Cayce Police Department for allowing us to photograph this vehicle for the website. Be sure to visit the Lexington County section of the database to see more photos from Cayce as well as other agencies in Lexington County.