Impersonating an officer charge dropped against town manager - WECT, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Impersonating an officer charge dropped against town manager

CHADBOURN, NC (WECT) – Chadbourn Town Manager Stevie Cox was in court Monday, accused of impersonating a police officer and speeding.

According to prosecutors in the case, Cox only pleaded guilty to driving 69 mph in a 60 mph zone and was fined $100. All other charges, including impersonating an officer and resisting/delaying police were dropped.

Cox released a public letter of apology for the situation.

Cox was pulled over by Highway Patrol in March 2011 on the way back from a trip to Raleigh. He was driving the police chief's vehicle at the time.

According to the highway patrol, when they asked Cox for his driver's license he presented them with the Chief's badge.

Dash cam video shows the Trooper asking Cox, "Where are you a chief?"

Cox said, "Chadbourn." He then apologized for handing him the badge.

Cox later voluntarily went to the SBI about the situation, and that's when he was informed they were investigating him for impersonating an officer.

A judge ordered a mistrial when this case first went to court in October 2012. Members of the jury were deadlocked after days of deliberations.

"To be quite candid with you, I think it was a waste of taxpayer money. It was also a very expensive proposition for my client to provide his defense. I also felt, there were better stuff the district attorney's office could be doing then to prosecute Mr. Cox." Said Mike Willis, Cox's attorney. 

According to Assistant District Attorney Heath Nance, the office is pleased with the outcome.

"Since being notified of this incident we felt it important to involve the community in determining whether a public official broke the law in the course of his employment," said Nance. "A special Grand Jury issued a misdemeanor Indictment against Mr. Cox, however, a trial jury could not reach a unanimous verdict. The plea in this case strikes a fair balance of holding Mr. Cox responsible for his behavior while ensuring that valuable court time is reserved for other pressing matters of community importance."

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