LELAND, NC (WWAY) -- We have learned through two highly placed independent sources in Brunswick County that the FBI is already investigating allegations of misconduct and corruption within the Leland Police Department. According to one of those sources, the SBI will usually defer to the federal agency so as not to double investigate a case.
The Leland Town Council last night requested Police Chief Tim Jayne to ask the SBI to come in and investigate his department based on the allegations we have exclusively reported. But since the FBI is already looking into the department, the SBI may recuse itself.
The town council may have also violated North Carolina's Open Meetings Law during its special meeting Thursday night. It went into closed session under "personnel action" then reconvened in public acknowledging it had voted to request Chief Jayne to ask the SBI to launch the investigation.
According to the North Carolina open meetings law (Chapter 143, Article 33 C), the council can go into closed session, "To plan, conduct, or hear reports concerning investigations of alleged criminal misconduct." However, it appears the council is not permitted to vote in closed session to request an SBI investigation.
We have requested all minutes from last night's meeting regarding the conversation related to the SBI investigation and to know how each individual council member voted. We have also alerted the North Carolina Broadcasters Association alerting them of our concern.