31 Comments for this article

Tags: , , , , , , ,


RALEIGH, NC (WWAY) — Trooper Edward Wyrick Jr. and Trooper Andrew Smith have been placed on administrative duty after allegations that Wyrick intimidated a Raleigh woman during a traffic stop.

WWAY broke this story Tuesday.

Hoyt and Gina Tessener say they were in Wilmington last week for a conference.

They say Wyrick pulled over Gina last week near Wrightsville Beach because the trooper said her headlight was not working. The stop led to Wyrick accusing Tessener of drinking and driving.

Tessener says the trooper then took her to the Wrightsville Beach Police Department for a breath test. Gina blew a 0.00 twice.

“It was clear from his face when Gina blew the breathlyzer and it was 0.00…You can see him clench his jaw, tense up and was very angry by that,” Hoyt Tessener said. “You can just sense the way he tensed up.”

The Tesseners say Wyrick tried to intimidate them while they waited for the result of the second breath test.

In a statement, Gov. Bev Perdue said:

“The policy of this administration is zero tolerance for unacceptable behavior. We expect the absolute best from state employees. This incident has been under investigation since it came to light. These two troopers have been placed on administrative duty. The Secretary of Crime Control and Public Safety and the Colonel of the Highway Patrol will take appropriate action upon completion of their investigation.”

Comment on this Story

  • Tired of abusive cops

    He didn’t stop her for erratic driving. Read the information available. He stopped her for a broken headlight(which didn’t exist.) Why lie about the reason for the stop if he suspected her of DWI? Sounds like a typical “fishing expedition” for a bored cop.

  • Guest0987656

    If Mrs Bigshot Lawyer’s wife was driving in high heels, no wonder he pulled her over. High heels are slick, and their unbalance causes the foot to slip off the pedal. They are a hazard. Most women take them off before driving. A trained law enforcement officer, whose job it is to hunt DWIs, before they kill someone, would quickly notice the signs, of a foot slipping off the pedal.

    If Miss Priss refuses to take a soberity test, because her precious toe might scrape a pebble, that is her right. But that left Trooper Wyrick no other CHOICE, but to arrest her. I feel soooooooo sorry for her poor “Grived and Saddened” bigshot lawyer husband. Maybe a few thousand dollars might make him happy. But in this case his wife was wrong, and it looks like he’s gonna have to go find someone else to squeeze.

  • Punchy

    That has got to be the most ignorant response yet. Tell that to Gov Purdue and get back to us. No go play desk duty with your pal, Mr Bigshot Pooper Wyrick!

  • Guesttoday

    I’ve driven in high heels on many occasions and my driving was just fine thank you very much. I certainly don’t think I should be driving barefoot. Why do you have so much anger towards this lawyer and his wife? The wife only refused a roadside sobriety test. I can’t say as I blame her because I think she felt something wasn’t right with this trooper. I don’t believe the story about the headlight either. He was working pretty hard to get a look at her. She is a nice looking woman, driving an expensive car and it’s after 10:00 p.m. on a weekend and the Trooper thinks…..I smell a victory because I in no way believe he smelled alchohol.

    The part about her strap falling down and he put it back up made my skin crawl. He could of found a wrap to offer her, or uncuffed her to allow her to do it herself. That’s a pretty intimate thing to do unless you are someone’s husband or BF.

    I have seen many law enforcement men and women that do their jobs with dignity and respect. When you are in a position of authority you should not abuse people with it. The husband asked for directions and the Trooper said he was taking his wife downtown???? The jail has been in Castle Hayne for at least 4 or 5 years now.

    I think this Trooper should find other employment

  • Anne Claremont

    It is unfortunate that it takes a letter from an attorney to get the results it yielded, but I’m glad it did. In my opinion you don’t sound like the kind of driver who wears heels or a dress.

    I have read the 8 page letter that details what officer Wyrick subjected Mrs. Tessener to and I suggest you do the same, here is the link:

    I believe that both Mr. & Mrs. Tessener acted within their rights.
    Additionally, Mr. Tessener states that he is not interested in any type of financial gain or “squeeze” of anyone, but wants to make sure that any abuse of authority by law enforcement is not be tolerated.
    That officer just picked the wrong car and I hope his example serves as a lesson for all.

  • Piersitter

    Most women do NOT drive in heels – they slip them off… but most women PUT THEM ON BEFORE EXITING THE VEHICLE… the snide names you are calling this woman just shows your distain for personal rights AND the law….. pathetic

  • Joseph Holland

    I see, you are interested in making any kind of sorry half-done excuse you can come up with for these thugs with badges. Thank god they are off the road for now until we figure out what to do with them. Ohhhh!!! wait that will be nothing because it will be found though their flimsy internal investigation that the thug troopers did nothing wrong and were acting fully within the confines of the law.

  • venting

    Maybe I should make a statement to the news on how I was treated by another local state trooper—because a formal complaint did nothing

  • Grand Ole Party

    So do it already. I would say your formal complaint didn’t go anywhere because you are full of it. So by all means please make a statement to the news and see how far that goes. We will all be sitting on the edge of our seats waiting to hear this amazing story.

  • Guest28451

    Wyrick loses his job as he should for abuse of power and the other trooper is disciplined and sent back to Field Training with a Sr Officer for 3 months. Then again the other possibility is the NCHP sweeps it under the rug and this powertripping moron gets off but the husband was a witness and this is where power hungry goons like this get in trouble. You pick a fight witht he wrong person and you get nailed.. This guy has some power due to connections she was innocent and this jack booted thug thought he could intimidate some woman and her husband.. He chose wrong and should pay and Ill bet if nothing is done by the NCHP this guy will sue the pants off the Trooper his buddy and the State(for lack of supervision) and he’d have a good case

  • GuestPJS

    I was pulled over by a bully state trooper a few weeks back and he made me blow and it read 0 wtf he accused me of laying on the beach and drinking wine .. I had my bikin on under my sun dress and was drinking a monster engery drink.. i have never had to sit in a officers car until that day wow .. he was such a bully … he got me for speeding .. but wanted more .. I told him I was almost 40 and never got a ticket .. he replied im 40 too… who gives a damn.. He was just a hateful bully …

  • R.L. Jones

    Keep up the good reporting. Law enforcement personnel must be held accountable. Those on patrol are essentially independent agents with no (or very limited supervision) and therefore the opportunity for this type of alleged incident exists. There are some individuals in the profession who have issues with power and those who abuse their position should be identified and removed from public service. The motto is and must remain to protect and to serve, not to fabricate probable cause nor intimidate the public. I spent 22 years in the profession and this story saddens me.

  • Piersitter

    This trooper was looking for sexual favors from a beautiful woman traveling alone at night…. and she IS beautiful … he pulled over the wrong babe…. I expect to see others coming forward with similar stories…. there is no question in my mind that he has done this before with completely different results

  • Guest9743

    Piersitter, put your contacts in a take a second look!!!

  • Grand Ole Party

    Where in this story has anyone stated ANYTHING about sexual favors? Are you upset that he didn’t pull you over for the same reason? Does your mother know you are on her laptop? There is no question in my mind that you are completely ignorant.

  • Guest43

    no matter what the video shows at the police station, she was stopped on a trumped up allegation that the victim had a headlight out on the car, not to mention he abused his power if in fact he had another officer stop her husband.seems to me, he should have been doing his job as a peacekeeper and not using it as a means to stop and intimidate law abiding citizens. if the nchp condones these actions and these kind of troopers then God Help Us All.

  • rd3

    i thought all their letter said was that the car had been recently serviced and during the service they hadn’t been told about any headlight issues.

    not doubting you, but if there isn’t proof that the headlight wasn’t out, then that shouldn’t be called a “trumped up” charge. If it has been proven though that both headlights are working, my apologies and you are correct.

  • newguest

    Is it standard procedure to handcuff a person BEHIND THEIR BACK after they have blown 0.00 twice and to take them STILL CUFFED across the county to appear before a magistrate if they are NOT going to be charged with anything? Why isn’t this officer guilty of false arrest and kidnapping? FIRING goes without saying. Wyrick should be arrested and charged. He should do time.

  • Dave

    It may the procedure of HWY Patrol to cuff anyone that they need to transport in their cars. Many cops have been killed by people in patrol cars that were not thought to be dangerous. Its a precaution to ensure that you make it home at the end of the day. Rememeber there is a presumption of innocense until after trial so the cuffing is for Officer Safety.

  • Guest443322

    To answer your question, yes, it is standard procedure to keep a person handcuffed (even after he/she blows 0.00). DWI is not an alcohol exclusive charge. Drugs (legal or illegal) could have played a factor in this case. Doesn’t sound like it, but let’s admit it, we do not have all of the facts (from either side).

    The trooper obviously felt that he had probable cause to arrest the female for DWI. Luckily, in NC we have magistrates that hear that probable cause before it’s decided whether they agree with the facts.

    It is my understanding in NC, after a person is arrested only a magistrate (or other judicial official) can release that person. This would explain why the trooper had to transport the female across to the county to the magistrate. It sounds as though the magistrate did not concur with the trooper’s probable cause and thus released the female. In which case, the system worked.

    Please reserve judgment (against both sides) until all the facts come to light and knowledge of laws and policies are understood. Based on the video from Wrightsville Beach PD it is obvious that some of the claims made by the female and her husband were inflated.

  • Grand Ole Party

    As a matter of fact it is standard procedure to cuff a person BEHIND THEIR BACK when being transported. It doesn’t matter what they blew. Any further questions?

  • Guest09876509

    When a trooper smells an odor of alcohol, it is his duty to investigate. When a person refuses to submit to a test, she leaves him no choice. So what if she wasn’t drunk, he didn’t know, and she refused to allow him to find out. I could drink a glasss of wine 2 hours ago, and it would still be clearly on my breath, though I would easily be a double gooseegg.

    I think the record will show that dozens, maybe hundreds, were pulled by this trooper, who submitted to a roadside test, and were let go, after he was given the oppertunity to establish there was no probable cause.
    According to NC law, you can’t simply “unarrest” someone for a DWI. You HAVE to take them to the magistrate.

    The process usually only lasts 10 minutes, when someone, not drunk, and takes a field soberity test. She refused, and caused it to be a 3 hour process, where she, unlike the the trooper, was never mistreated.

  • Not always black and white

    If you would have read the article correctly you would have thought before you spoke. The article states she was at the beach and taken to wrightsville beach police dept for the test. How in any way is that “across the county” She obviously did not blow on the side of the road and that’s why she was taken to the police dept to blow. From what I have read in many media outlets if she had been compliant on the roadside she would’ve been on here way back to where she came from and all of that would not have been needed. Why should he be fired? For doing his job. What would’ve happened if she was drunk and hit you and killed your family. What would you complain about then? I blame her for her lack of cooperation in this matter. It all could have been avoided with a little common sense on her part. Shame on Queen Bev and people who don’t get the facts before they pass judgement. We should respect all of our law enforcement for what they do everyday rather than be nasty about it. Who will you call when you need help?

  • JoeBlow

    If a police officer arrests a person for a misdemeanor or felony then the person is under arrest until they have seen a magistrate and the magistrate finds no probable cause in the arrest. Learn the law then speak. It will make you seem more intelligent.

  • Guesttoday

    Okay when I’m wrong I admit it. I watched the video this morning and I didn’t see the Trooper showing any disrespect to Mrs. Tessener. Also Mr. Tessener said his wife was wearing a dress with straps….I didn’t see that in the video either. The Trooper only seemed agitated when Mr. Tessener started pointing fingers and it was clear he was the one showing anger.

    Looks like video and cameras are good tools for Law Enforcment. The pictures and video dont lie.

  • Brian

    Of course we all know that attorneys NEVER lie. ESPECIALLY when they’re dealing with an emotionally charged situation that affects them personally. Neither do politicians.

  • NCHotMaMa0711

    Actually NO almost all of you really need to find out the WHOLE story before you begin speaking about things you know absolutely nothing about. I have read the actual letter which was sent to Gov. Bev Perdue and Gina Tessener was harrassed, humiliated, bullied and threatened. She did not comply with the field sobriety test because she was wearing an evening gown with high heels and was on a gravel area. Wyrick then asked her to blow in a breathalizer and she exercised her right to say “no” because she knew if he would accuse of her smelling alcohol on her breath and she had not drank any then he was extremely capable of altering the breathalizer results. Therefore she was arrested because she denied to take it. Her not taking it was not because she was guilty of drinking and driving but simply because she wanted a witness to prove what the correct accurate results were of the intoximeter when she blew at the police station. So people I suggest “KNOWING BEFORE SPEAKING!!”

  • Funny the the report I watched showed the lot where she was stopped as being paved. I know, it’s hard to tell loose gravel from asphault.

  • Guest: Guest2

    You suggest people “KNOW BEFORE SPEAKING”??? Did you even watch the video? She was NOT wearing an evening gown, she was wearing a dress. Wearing a dress does not prevent anyone from taking a field sobriety test. All of this is a result of her not doing what she should have done, taking the road side test. This is all her own doing. The officer was doing his job. She was being held to the SAME standard as anyone else and she didn’t like being treated like any other person. She is no better than anyone else.

  • Joseph Holland

    Please, respect all law enforcement!!! You have to show respect to get respect and I see too many who have no respect for the very people they are sworn to protect and serve. They aren’t drafted into these jobs, they seek out these positions and volunteer to become cops. They don’t deserve any more praise or admiration that anyone else. It’s just a job and they asked for it.

  • GuestTD

    It seems there are a lot more bullies toting badges these days. I had a similar experience with a young Wilmington Cop. I suspect many class bullies in elemnentary schools wind up being Cops.


Related News

Tomas Green, pictured with his mom. (Photo: GoFundMe)
15 hours ago
0 Comments for this article
Hit and run driver kills junior at Topsail High
Read More»
Dep. Moore and K9 Dickey, left, and drugs seized at traffic stop, right. Photos: BCSO
15 hours ago
0 Comments for this article
K9 finds drugs during traffic stop
Read More»
Michael Anthony Elijah and Joy Denise Johnson (Photo: WPD)
15 hours ago
0 Comments for this article
WPD: Couple charged in narcotics bust
Read More»