ONLY ON 3: Attorney & wife’s run-in with trooper leads to letter to Gov. Perdue

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Submitted: Wed, 06/29/2011 - 1:28am
Updated: Wed, 06/29/2011 - 7:40pm

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — A Raleigh attorney is making some big accusations against a Highway Patrol trooper here in New Hanover County.

Hoyt Tessener says the trooper accused his wife of driving drunk, but that’s just the start of the accusations that Tessener made in a nine-page letter to the Gov. Bev Perdue.

Read Tessener’s letter to Gov. Perdue

The Highway Patrol is investigating the allegations against Tpr. Edward Wyrick Jr. What’s also interesting is all the people Tessener sent it to.

Tessener also sent the letter to Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton, Attorney General Roy Cooper, Speaker of the House Thom Tillis, Senate President Pro-Tem Phil Berger, along with area representatives and senators like Thom Goolsby. Tessener even sent the letter to the District Attorney’s office and the Highway Patrol.

In the letter Tessener describes an incident last week involving his wife Gina, who was returning to a friend’s home in Wrightsville Beach after leaving a North Carolina Advocates for Justice gala in downtown Wilmington.

Hoyt Tessener says Wyrick pulled Gina Tessener over just before the Wrightsville Beach bridge. In the letter Tessener says the trooper said he pulled her over because one of her head lights did not work. The trooper then accused Gina of drinking when she had not.
Gina refused to do a field sobriety test because she was in heels and a dress and in a gravel parking lot. Wyrick arrested the mother of three and took her to the Wrightsville Beach Police Department for a breath test

According to court documents Gina Tessener passed not just one but two breath tests by blowing a 0.00 each time.

In the letter Hoyt Tessener, who came to the police department to be with his wife, says he thought his wife would be free to go. Tessener said Wyrick yelled at both he and his wife at the police department. Tpr. Wyrick, who Tessener says seemed upset Gina did not fail the breath test, explained that she would have to be taken downtown where only a magistrate can release here.
Hoyt says before following the trooper, who still had his wife in custody, he noticed Wyrick texting someone on his phone.

During the trip toward downtown another trooper pulled over Hoyt Tessener, who suspects he was set up by Wyrick. The second trooper let Tessener go after some questioning.
Tessener eventually figured out his wife was not downtown, but instead at the New Hanover County Jail in Castle Hayne.

Tessener says the magistrate at the jail asked his wife if she understood what she did wrong. The letter says Gina Tessener told the judge she did nothing wrong and did not understand why she was arrested in the first place.

In the end Gina Tessener’s citation was thrown out for lack of probable cause.

An internal investigation is underway as Wyrick remains on duty.

We reached out to several people including the Tesseners, Gov. Perdue and Tpr. Wyrick himself, but we have yet to get in touch with any of them.

UPDATE: Tuesday evening WWAY received an e-mail from Hoyt Tessener, who apologized for not returning our calls earlier today.

"I wanted to give the SHP the opportunity to investigate," Tessener wrote. "Despite what we went through, I wanted to speak with the SHP first. We heard from SHP at 4 p.m. today. We plan to speak with interal affairs officers tomorrow… I am disappointed to learn that Trooper Wyrick remains on active duty… I am curious to learn about their investigation."

Also, first thing Tuesday morning WWAY requested the dashcam video from Wyrick’s car. The Highway Patrol says his car is not equipped with a video camera.


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129 Comments on "ONLY ON 3: Attorney & wife’s run-in with trooper leads to letter to Gov. Perdue"

2015 years 8 months ago

well chalk up another day in N.C. If enough people would file formal complants when they feel a leo has broken the rules of conduct. Then maby perdue will wake up and put her foot down and clean house in the nc highway patrol.As a matter of fact is the state troopers realy nessary when there is all ready local and county leo I allwayes love to see a good train wreck.

2015 years 8 months ago

I hope that you people check out this trooper’s record:

He seems to be keeping an awful lot of drunks, and otherwise impaired, drivers off of our roads.
Too bad that it isn’t illegal to be a ‘blowhard troublemaker’, because then someone could arrest Mr. Tessenner! I really hate that the trooper that pulled him over, let him go!
And sure , why not suspend a trooper who makes so little money anyway, for putting his life on the line everyday! I couldn’t agree more.

2015 years 8 months ago

IF you refuse a breathalyzer and are taken to jail that means the law says you are GUILTY until you prove yourself innocent????

When did this country become a fascist state? Hmmmm?

The woman was 0.0, there was no alcohol. The trooper was wrong all the way around on this one!

He wanted to pick up a hot blonde and when she shot him down, he took revenge.

2015 years 8 months ago

When she refused to take the soberity test, she left the officer little choice.

2015 years 8 months ago

That’s what we have. Fast to critize, the nc state highway patrol is accepting applications–APPLY!!! Can you bear to see that mangled body, fight with that person that doesn’t want to be arrested, stop a car on a desserted road in the middle of the night.. I’m tired of everybody critizing the people that put their life on the line to protect us. No body is perfect, mistakes get made. Would we have heard about this, if this lady would have been under the influence? This story is base on her account to her husband as to what happened before her husband arrived. Get your name out there lawyer. Maybe if she would have taken the sobriety test at the initial stop, this would not have gone to the jail. Pull the stats on the DWI arrest and convictions in New Hanover Co. My hat is off to the NC State Highway Patrol.