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FIRST ON 3 UPDATE: As HP investigation nears end, a look at differing stories

READ MORE: FIRST ON 3 UPDATE: As HP investigation nears end, a look at differing stories

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- It's been more than a week since WWAY broke the story involving a Raleigh couple who accused two Highway Patrol troopers of crossing the line. The Highway Patrol says an internal investigation underway since the allegations came to light will soon come to a close.

Gina and Hoyt Tessener claimed troopers Edward Wyrick and Andrew Smith bullied them during a visit to the coast for a conference. Documents, recording and other information released since we broke the story give us a closer look at the many discrepancies in the different versions of the story.

The story starts with a long letter attorney Hoyt Tessener sent to Gov. Bev Perdue and more than a dozen other political heavyweights. The letter tells the Tesseners' account of an incident on June 21 into June 22, when Hoyt's wife Gina was pulled over near Wrightsville Beach as she left a gala in downtown Wilmington.

The Tesseners say Tpr. Wyrick pulled the mother of three over because he said a headlight on her Lexus sedan was out. A photo they provided shows the headlight working.

"He then turns to me and says, 'I smell alcohol on your breath,'" Gina Tessener said in her first TV interview June 28.

The Tesseners claimed in the letter and on camera that Gina did not have anything to drink that night.

"I didn't drink," she said in our interview.

But a DWI report says she told Wyrick she sipped a glass of wine.

The Tesseners claim the trooper then asked Gina to perform a field sobriety test. Gina was uncomfortable with his request due to the circumstances.

"I was in a cocktail dress," she said. "I had high heels on."

The Tesseners also claimed gina was in gravel lot, but Wyrick's DWI report says the stop was in a paved hotel lot.

After refusing the field tests, Gina wound up in cuffs and on her way to the Wrightsville Beach Police Department to take a breath test.

The Tesseners' letter claims that at the police station Wyrick allowed Gina one phone call and remained within inches of her as she called her husband. Vvideo from the police station shows a much different scene.

"You can make all the phone calls you want," Wyrick said as he handed Tessener her phone. "If you have any questions, ask me."

After Hoyt arrived, Gina passed two breath test, blowing a 0.00 each time.

"It was at this point where he became angry," Gina Tessener said.

Hoyt told us, "He did the second one and told us to leave for that one, and Gina left to the other room, and I didn't. I stood exactly where I was, and he came up and put his chest within an inch of my shoulder telling me to leave."

Again, the video tells a different story. Wyrick told the Tesseners to leave after the result showed up and did not get as close to Hoyt Tessener as the couple said.

Matthew Ragone was also in the intake area on a DWI charge. Despite blowing more than twice the legal limit, Ragone said in an exclusive interview with WWAY that Wyrick stayed calm the entire time.

"The officer himself kept his cool pretty well, asked the man multiple times to please calm down," Ragone said.

You can also see Gina walking around. Though Wyrick noted in his report that she was unsteady on her feet, she does not appear to be unstable on her high heels.

As the night of June 21 turned into the morning of June 22 the Wrightsville Beach Police Department video shows Gina Tessener still in custody. The Tesseners say it was at this time that they saw Tpr. Wyrick texting on his phone. Seventeen minutes later, Wyrick and Gina head to the New Hanover County Jail to see a magistrate.

Hoyt Tessener says he was following Wyrick, when another trooper, Andrew Smith, pulled him over for speeding. The Tesseners think the whole thing was a set-up organized by text message.

Tuesday the Highway Patrol released text messages between the two troopers prior to Hoyt's run-in with Smith. There's nothing suggesting a set-up; just an account of what Wyrick was going through with the Tessesners. Tpr. Smith, though, responded to the message saying "f*** her and f*** him."

After Smith let Hoyt Tessener go with a warning, computer messages between the troopers' cruisers show that while Wyrick was on the way to the jail he received this message from smith: "Tell him if he wants to cop an attitude to feel free and come back ill stroke him that speed."

Two minutes later and before Wyrick arrived at the jail he sent this back to Smith "How fast," with Smith replying, "58."

The Tesseners say once at the jail Gina faced a rude magistrate, who told her she's "one of those who thinks you're better than everybody else." The video of her hearing with the magistrate does not have audio. You can see the magistrate and Gina talking to one another.

We contacted the Highway Patrol today, but there's still no comment. A spokesman did say, though, the patrol is in the final stages of the investigation, which should wrap up very soon.

Meanwhile Hoyt Tessener is scheduled to be in court in Raleigh tomorrow morning for allegedly punching a bar manager in the face back in December. The Tesseners have not returned our calls for comment since our interview last week.

Disclaimer: Comments posted on this, or any story are opinions of those people posting them, and not the views or opinions of WWAY NewsChannel 3, its management or employees. You can view our comment policy here.


I find that very hard to believe.

I have not heard ANYWHERE that the cell phones used by the officers were personal and not state issued. I seriously doubt the state would promote personal cell phone use to conduct official state business. IF those WERE personal phones, the state had no right to audit their texts. Your reasoning just doesn't add up.

Now here's the main point, irregardless of who's phones were used in the text conversation. The officers use of the "F" word against the Tesseners was completely out of line along with an invitation for one of them to "...come on back here and I'll..." It was rude, it was offensive, totally unprofessional, spiteful and a display of power.

The troopers are the product of the NCSHP and are well taught how to handles suspects that are much worse than the Tessners on a good day. Their text messages make them look like 7 dollar rent-a-cops that missed a few classes and came to school with donut juice on their bellies.

Yeah, it's just like you said, "BIG DEAL!" I guess it's a good thing the Tessners were white, otherwise the "N" word would likely have surfaced parallel to the "F" word. Ignorance is ignorance and rudness is rudeness, no matter how you try to justify it!

Texts and taxes

The story stated " messages between the troopers' cruisers show that while Wyrick was on the way to the jail he received this message from smith..." Were messages not sent through the computers installed in the cruisers and linked to the state communication network, all of which is paid by taxpayers? Were the troopers not being paid during that time by taxpayers? Just what messages are transmitted on the taxpayer provided system and equipment by taxpayer paid employees? What standard of behavior do we expect from state employees?

The profanity laced comments

The profanity laced comments were text messages sent from their personel cell phones. No taxpayer money used there!!!

The text messages were on

The text messages were on personally owned and paid cell phones. The computer messages did not contain profanity and DID show that the lawyer was speeding 13mph over the limit.

Call down. Your beloved taxes didn't pay for the profanity

laced texts. Those were over their personal phones.

What in the world does it

What in the world does it matter if they were their personal cell phones. I'm not sure if it's law in NC yet but the general consensus is that you don't text and drive and they weren't texting about official police business so it was pointless whether or not they were on personal or state issued cell phones, it was highly unprofessional.


So, you NEVER utter a word during the course of your workday that has anything to do with anything other than work? Everything you do at work pertains to your job? Never an instance where you may check, DRUDGEREPORT or maybe a quick game of Angry Birds?

Another thing you folks seem to forget is that all of us who are in law enforcement PAY TAXES TOO!!! That means that we pay for our gear, our fuel, our vehicles, our supplies...and on and on...

Add to that the fact that we are held to a much higher standard than the rest of the folks out there and it is amazing that you don't have more police coming unstrung. We have to stand there while fine upstanding citizens like yourselves call us everything but late for dinner and not respond in kind. We are expected to sit their and take it without responding...I don't pay enough taxes to cover that kind of BS!

You act so "holier than thou"...I'd be willing to bet you drop the "F" bomb quite often and probably even check out some internet porn while working. I'd also be willing to bet that your boss doesn't pay you to do any of those things and they pay taxes too!

I'm not an officer, but...

I have never been a police officer, but I have more than fifteen years of experience working in some sort of customer service capacity and I have had to stand there and take what people dish out. And yes, when they get to where they can't here me, I have said things to my coworkers that I would never say to a customer. I am sure that it works the same way with police officers. It's a wonder their tongues aren't always swollen at the end of the shift from having to bite it all the time.

I suppose the general public would rather have the officer speak their mind to them instead of venting to their coworkers, who are probably the only people who truly understand where they are coming from.

In the twenty four years that I have been driving I have been pulled six times. Three of those times I received tickets. Two of those tickets were issued by NC State Troopers. In all of those times, the officers were extremely nice. The last Trooper gave me a lecture, that I deserved, but he was never out of line.

I really don't envy the police officers their jobs. They not only have to deal with aggravating people, they put their lives on the line every time they put on their uniforms. It's truly amazing to me that people would rather err on the side of the lawbreakers instead of giving the benefit of the doubt to the ones who have sworn to protect them.

Can you not read any of the

Can you not read any of the 10 stories on the 5 or so webpages that have this story?

They texted while the trooper was at the jail, not while he was driving.

Not to mention that law enforcement are exempt from texting laws, anyway.

Who said that they were

Who said that they were texting and driving?? No where. These are thier cell phones that they pay for so as long as they arent breaking the law, they can pretty much text each other what the want, and how are they unprofessional?? Are you telling me you've never texted or made a personal call while on the clock?? please

The times show that they

The times show that they were not driving when it took place!!! That is the point!! It shows that the Tessners were not set up. Who cares what they said in a personel converstaion. I am sure you just speak roses about everyone you come in contact with in your job...


anthony u might have another opinion if it were ur wife or daughter, noone needed to be put thru this and dont 4 get the fact that wyrick put himself in that position with that bogus headlight story. he brought it on himself.hope he gets suspended and the other little smart ass as well.

Not so bugus huh?

Read the investigation results. According to the dealership that REPAIRED the light the NEXT DAY the headlight story was not so bogus. And it wasn't the first time she was stopped for it either. The Lexus dealer recommended changing the bulb in Feb. Apparently they didn't want to pay the $215 repair bill. So were's all the outrage towards the couple for all of their tall tales?


they took the picture the next afternoon..... why didn't they take the picture the same night>>>>>> maybe because they wanted to fix it first??? Most of the other things they stated happened didn't.. don't you think they could have lied about this also..


The phone text messages displayed between the troopers shows how unprofessional they are behind the scenes. Tropper Wyrick overstepped his beliefs by continuing to pursue Gina with a charge that she clearly passed. Another thing, Wyrick said she had a headlight out?? The headlight was not out. Seems to me he wanted to check her out in that cocktail dress w/heels. I saw Wyrick at Gold's gym yesterday evening and I can tell by his appearance he has a hard time getting close with the ladies which is probably why he feels the need to pull over some eye candy because that's probably as close he can get.


Are you for real??? So you Can tell by someone's appearance what they can and cannot do!!! Your just as stupid as you sound, a real professional. Maybe you should review the tapes and audio before you open your mouth....Oh I forgot, you can tell things about people by thier appearance....




You're the one that needs to grow up. How can you tell someone to grow up when your making respones like this "I THINK YOU ARE JEALOUS BECAUSE HE DIDN'T PAY ATTENTION TO YOU" who the hell are you and why are you contridicting yourself? You see a uniform headshot and you get some idea that he is a nice looking man. Have you seen this guy off duty? Unlikely not. Your probably just one of those unhappily married chicks or a dating site member who gets this great idea about how someone looks based on everything from the chest up.

He was doing his job up until she blew zero's. He should have apologized to her and led her on her marry way. But no his ego and power trip got the best of him. This stupid act by them caused both troopers to be taken away from the real "bigger fish" issues on the highway.


Who cares how they act BEHIND the scenes??? So please let me get this straight, you were at Gold's Gym checking out some guys?? Hahaha do you bother to work out at all or do you just go for the eye candy?


Your right who cares what they text behind the scenes, however when your on duty text messaging your buddy saying

"f...her f...him"...."Tell him if he wants to cop an attitude to feel free and come back ill stroke him that speed."

This up above is crap and the sad thing is they were prob texting and driving...

To answer your final question..I work out and in my break between sets I always check out the eye candy.

On a different note the NCSHP are the best trained and have more guts than any law enforcement agency out there. However we all make mistakes and it sucks to see them get a black eye for something that could have been handled in a more professional way.

Eye Candy

You have no clue if they were driving and texting, none. They have the same rights you do buttercup, they are grown adults and may use whatever wording they wish to. So you go to the gym and watch the men working out? Eye candy heh? Whatever floats your boat I guess.

Eye Candy

Let's not be childish Grand Ole Party, you can relax with the homo comments or keep going but your making yourself look like your interested in dropping the soap.

What do you mean "who cares

What do you mean "who cares how they act behind the scenes"? They are professional law enforcement officers allegedly!!! They are supposed to conduct themselves in a professional manner whether they are on duty or not. Last I checked it's not some boys club where you get to drive fast, text, harass people, and display general non-becoming behavior. They are expected to be of a higher moral standard by virtue of the job the asked for!!!!

So you don't understand the phrase " Who cares"

So let me get this straight, because they were texting each other BEHIND the scenes this make them something other than professionals? You have never texted someone? Never said anything negative about someone? Give me a break. Don't feed me that higher moral standard crap either, you want them held to a higher moral standard then pay them at a higher rate. In the mean time I think they are free to text one another.

Grand Ole Pary

I see dem textn all the time and talkin on tha phone while drivin. They be contridcting themselves all da time. Grand Ole Party need shuttin down.


Hey Dave, does your doctor know you stopped taking your meds?


No! please don't tell

Regardless of the outcome

the State Bar should chat with Mr. Tessener.

He clearly was not completely truthful in his 8 page diatrabe.

And he appears today in Raleigh on an assault charge. One must wonder how lengthy the letter was for this little episode.

Clearly he is not acting with the high moral and ethical standrds of an Officer of the Court, which all lawyers are.

Are there plans for a reality show "Dipsy Housewives of Wrightsville Beach" or "Abrasive Attorneys of Raleigh"?

Oooohhhh Hoyt, where are you?

Ooooohhh, Hoyt, where are you and your princess trophy wife (LOL). You ran to your computer to type your letter, then to the news. Now they want to talk to you and you refuse to answer or respond! Hard to defend yourself when you got caught in several flat out lies!


These troopers were just doing their job...sounds like this couple thinks they are above the law...refusing to take the test in the beginning because she was wearing a dress and heels - ridiculous! and the last time I checked "sipping on a glass of wine" was considered drinking!!!