WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — A former New Hanover County Sheriff’s Deputy is in jail under a $500,000 bond after a grand jury indicted him Monday.
Jurors reviewed the results from an investigation conducted by the State Bureau of Investigation regarding the misconduct of Lt. Joey LeBlanc.
The New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office fired LeBlanc after detectives from the Vice and Narcotics Unit noticed some irregularities with their assistant in command and reported them to the captain.
An internal investigation found LeBlanc violated the departments truthfulness, evidence procedures and drug policies. So, Leblanc was terminated in June.
In court Monday, New Hanover County District Attorney Ben David said his office along with the New Hanover County judges recused themselves from the case because of a conflict of interest.
Visiting Judge Jenkins presided over the case and Assistant Attorney General Adren Harris worked the prosecution. Harris said 41-year-old LeBlanc had been stealing evidence from the county for two years.
He added that in one case, Leblanc forged signatures from two judges more than 28 times to get drugs from a local pharmacy.
According to the defense, the father of three was hurt several times while working for the Sheriff’s Office and took opiate drugs to which he later became addicted. His attorney said LeBlanc’s addiction forced him to check himself into a rehab center in California.
LeBlanc was indicted for 28 counts of obtaining controlled substances by fraud, four counts of obtaining property by false pretenses, four counts of embezzlement, four counts of altering, destroying, stealing evidence, four counts of obstruction of justice, 21 counts of misdemeanor possession of schedule II controlled substance, 28 counts of trafficking, four to 13 grams, 14 counts of trafficking, 14 to 27 grams, and one count of trafficking, 28 grams or more.