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Local News

  • Race for sheriff: Four drop out of race; two others jump right in

    Editor's note: This is the second installment in a series of stories about sheriff candidates.

    Four candidates have withdrawn their bids for sheriff, and two more have thrown their hats in the ring—bringing the number of people who want to be sheriff to 10.

    Former Brunswick County Sheriff’s deputy Ken Messer and retired U.S. Marshal Carlton Ebhardt have expressed interest in the sheriff’s post, Brunswick County Democratic Party Chairman Vernon Ward said.

  • Sheriff's deputies allege political coercion

    They say Ronald Hewett forced them to campaign for him, participate in fundraisers and do physical labor to benefit his bid for sheriff.

    But Brunswick County Sheriff’s deputies have had enough.

    Amid allegations of political coercion, intoxication at crime scenes, extortion and other charges, Brunswick County Sheriff Ronald Hewett has been suspended. He was temporarily relieved of his responsibilities as sheriff last Thursday. A hearing to permanently remove Hewett from office was continued until May 5.

  • Vying for sheriff

    The following men and women have announced their interest in becoming Brunswick's next sheriff:

    John Ingram

    Kyle Jones

    Jerry Dove

    Jennifer Fisher

    Sam Davis

    Walt Willis

    Willie Sloan

    Elizabeth Lewis

    Doug Todd

    Franky Thomas

    James Contreas

    Tim Daniels

    Twelve Democrats think they have what it takes to be sheriff.

  • Substance usage possible issue in shierff's suspension

    According to documentation, substance use may be an issue for suspended Brunswick County Sheriff Ronald E. Hewett.

    The petition to remove Hewett from office states, “Sheriff Hewett stated to Lt. Charlie Wilson, Lt. David Crocker, and to Captain Gene Caison that these officers should ignore the Sheriff if the Sheriff called them after 10 p.m. and either cussed them out or fired them,” the petition indicates.

  • Sheriff suspended, indicted on four felony counts; hearing to officially remove him from office slated for May 5

    Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.

    For nearly 10 months we have all wondered about the nature of the federal investigation surrounding Brunswick County Sheriff Ronald Hewett.

    Little information has been made public about the nature of the investigation, but rumors and speculation have been rampant.

    Since first being subpoenaed by the U.S. Attorney’s Office on June 7, 2007, Hewett has maintained he did not know the scope or the nature of the investigation—and his innocence.

  • Deputies on duty paid for work at Hewett's home

    Tucked behind a black gate and thick woods off Holden Beach Road is the home of Ronald and Julie Hewett.

    Though passersby can’t see the residence from the road, deputies claim they have been there and were forced to work there while it was being built.

    According to the petition to remove Hewett from office, Hewett “allegedly engaged in felonious and continual pattern of embezzling by a public official beginning in 2003 and continuing through 2007,” a violation of N.C. General Statute 14-92, embezzlement of funds by public officers and trustees.

  • Hewett's son assigned sheriff's office equipment

    Today he is a police officer at the Holden Beach Police Department, but sheriff’s deputies claim Justin Hewett has been receiving sheriff’s office equipment for years.

    The 21-year-old son of Ronald Hewett has received equipment and gear from the sheriff’s office including a vehicle, clothing, ammunition and a badge, deputies claim.

  • Acting sheriff says citizens are in good hands

    It’s business as usual at the Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office.

    But there’s a new sheriff in town.

    After Ronald Hewett was suspended as sheriff last Thursday, county coroner Greg White assumed all duties as sheriff.

  • Drug unit and SWAT commander resigns amid Hewett's 'erratic behavior'

    Though one day before his resignation Lt. Mickey Smith led the SWAT team to a state victory, former sheriff Ronald Hewett had banned Smith from staff meetings and forbidden him to come into his office.

    Smith, a 15-year veteran of the sheriff’s office, served as the head of the drug enforcement unit and the SWAT team during his tenure at the sheriff’s office.

    He resigned March 21.

  • Detectives captain among deputies alleging illegal behavior

    For 38 years, Gene Caison called him a friend. For the last 14 years, Caison called him his boss.

    But Caison says suspended Brunswick County Sheriff Ronald Hewett is no longer the person he grew up with or belonged at the helm of the sheriff’s office.

    “He’s not the person he was when he got elected,” Caison said last Thursday night, minutes after district attorney Rex Gore announced Hewett’s suspension as sheriff. “I’m sorry the whole situation got to the point that it did.”