BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — The plot thickens in a Brunswick County trial in which a former Holden Beach cop says she was discriminated against and fired because she’s a woman.
Terri Oxford says she could smell alcohol on Chief Wally Layne’s breath when he responded to a scene back in 2004. Much of day four of the trial was centered around that incident. Before court adjourned for the week, another drinking incident came to light.
Brunswick County Det. Anthony Caison took the stand and said former Sheriff Ron Hewett was intoxicated when he drove his wife, Chief Layne and Layne’s wife to look for a canoe T.J. Cheney was using to break in to Holden Beach Homes. Caison said Hewett threatened him with his job if he told anyone they had been drinking and said Hewett would deny it to his grave.
“We hardly ever knew what the motivation was at Sheriff Hewett at the time when he was in stages of his intoxication,” Caison said. “You never knew what he meant when he said things, basically is what I’m saying. You’d never know. He may be coming out of left field with something.”
Another Brunswick County deputy, Capt. Charlie Wilson, testified his job was also on the line. Wilson said Hewett forced him to write and sign a letter bashing Oxford. The day after Hewett left office, Wilson says he apologized to Oxford and claimed the letter was Hewett’s opinion.
Oxford says she worked on a lot of cases she didn’t get any credit for. She says “Hollywood Hewett”, as they called the sheriff, took the credit instead. Oxford was the only woman on the Holden Beach Police force at the time.
Court will not be session tomorrow, but will resume Monday.