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Many Brunswick County residents anticipated the outcome of today’s sentencing. Reaction to the fate of the former sheriff was mixed. Many Brunswick County residents said the former law man was not above the law. Brunswick County’s former top cop now faces more than a year in prison. “He’s been throwing people in jail and he’s been worse, the same things they were doing,” said Jerra Griffin of Southport. “I feel like he’s getting what he deserves,” spoke Beverly Maggard from Bolivia. Ronald Hewett’s sentencing was originally scheduled for September 8th at the federal courthouse in Raleigh. It was delayed to Monday. The sentencing is the culmination of a nearly two year investigation. Hewett was the subject of a state probe involving alleged sexual harassment of female officers, showing up drunk at crime scenes, and interfering with investigations involving his own relatives. Some residents say the punishment fits the crime. Brandi Carr, also of Bolivia, said, “Basically, if you do a crime you have to pay the price for it.” While being investigated, federal prosecutors say Hewett tried to influence the testimony of witnesses, mainly sheriff’s deputies, who were subpoenaed to testify before a federal grand jury. Hewett was a popular sheriff in Brunswick County for 14 years, and after his sentencing, more residents reflected on what they think went wrong. “To me, Ron Hewett was mixing feelings with business, and when you get to doing that it cause you to have a downfall, that any other person would have done. He’s just one of those that got caught,” said John Johnson, Bolivia. Current Brunswick County sheriff, John Ingram, declined comment. Brunswick County District Attorney Rex Gore also would not comment on the 16 month sentence, only to say that his office will continue to move forward with pending charges against the former sheriff. Hewett is still facing state charges of embezzlement and obstructing justice.

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