Incident Involving Rental Property on Seabrook Island

From the SIPOA Board Executive Committee:
It is likely that many of you have read the reports in the Post and Courier, and watched reports on the local TV stations, of an arrest and filing of criminal charges against an adult in relation to an alleged incident on March 30th at a rented house on Seabrook Island.
The purpose of this post is two-fold: (1) To summarize what SIPOA knows about the incident; and (2) to appeal to Property Owners who rent their homes to establish guidelines about the terms and conditions of their rentals, to protect yourself and the reputation of Seabrook Island to the extent reasonably possible.
What SIPOA knows about this incident:
1. This was a rental property.
2. SIPOA’s first notice of the incident was when the first newspaper reports appeared about two weeks ago. No incidents were reported to SIPOA Security or (to our knowledge) to the Charleston County Sheriff’s Office at the time the alleged events occurred, or during the time the rental was active.
3. None of the persons involved, to our knowledge, are in any way affiliated with Seabrook Island.
4. SIPOA has not to date received any requests for information or assistance from CCSO or any other law enforcement agency regarding this alleged incident.
5. If SIPOA is properly requested by a law enforcement agency or other court process to provide information, SIPOA will cooperate appropriately with the assistance of counsel.
6. SIPOA has no other information, and it would be inappropriate for SIPOA to make any additional comment as the legal process goes forward.
A request to all Property Owners who rent their homes, and to their Rental Agencies:
1. Property Owners and Rental Agencies are reminded that the Property Owner is ultimately responsible to SIPOA for any violations of SIPOA’s Rules and Regulations by any of their guests, including rental guests.
2. SIPOA has no authority to make rules and regulations about who may rent a property that is advertised for rental on Seabrook Island—that is a matter of contract between the Property Owner and the Renter.
3. However, SIPOA does have the authority to enforce SIPOA’s Rules and Regulations if contemporaneous complaints are made by neighbors or other witnesses, or if Security Force officers personally observe violations occurring. Security Force Officers will also call civilian law enforcement (typically CCSO) if they become aware or receive complaints of suspected criminal activity.
4. Property Owners and their Rental Agencies are strongly encouraged to consider establishing reasonable conditions concerning the persons to whom they will rent, and would encourage rentals to families or groups of individuals who are renting for golf outings or tennis outings, eco-trips and the like, and would discourage non-family rentals for spring break, graduation parties or other events where the guests are predominantly minors with minimal or non-parental supervision.
If you have any questions or comments, please post them at publiccomment@sipoa.org .

Thanks for your consideration.

-Submitted by Ed Houff, SIPOA Legal Committee Chair

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