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BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — The former police chief of Boiling Spring Lakes has pleaded guilty to a crime involving his son.

District Attorney Jon David says Emmett Ballree entered the plea today to willfully failing to discharge his duties as a police officer.

Assistant DA Chris Thomas, who handled the case, says as part of his sentence, Ballree must surrender his law enforcement certification. Thomas says Ballree’s certification had expired, but this will prevent him from ever reapplying. Ballree also received a 45-day suspended sentence and probation as a first-time offender.

The case stems from a State Bureau of Investigation inquiry into allegations that Ballree allowed his son Michael, a felon, to possess and fire a fully automatic suppressed firearm under his supervision at a law enforcement firing range.

WWAY learned of the SBI probe of Emmett Ballree in June 2012. The investigation came at the request of David and Superior Court Judge Ola Lewis.

The City of Boiling Spring Lakes suspended Ballree from his job in July 2012 as it began a separate investigation into an allegation Ballree abused his power as chief. A couple weeks later, the city fired Ballree after determining he ordered an off-duty officer to drive Michael to work in Southport. He has not worked in law enforcement since, the DA said.

Less than a week later a grand jury indicted Ballree and his son on gun charges. In July 2013 Michael Ballree pleaded guilty to possession of a firearm by a felon. He received a suspended sentence and probation.

Comment on this Story

  • Punishment?

    Did he plead to a felony or misdemeanor? If he pled guilty today, that means the DA and the Defendant agreed on a punishment before he entered the plea. Did the DA not know/share the punishment?

  • Guest2020

    The charge was a misdemeanor. I’m not sure what you are wanting to know with your second question.

  • JohnQtaxpayer

    Misdemeanor/Felony, the specifics were not clearly stated however there are two things that can be known for sure. The original charge was a felony and would cause one to never be able to be certified as an LEO again. At the same time, if the plea was to a second degree misdemeanor, the same would apply. So, in any event, Ballree said “Guilty” to a crime that was severe enough to prevent him from ever wearing the badge again. And folks, they was way past time!

    Former city manager David Lewis full well and completely knew of Ballree’s disgraceful departure from the Mount Olive Police Department. So did former Mayor Joan Kinney, that sat on the committee to hire a new police chief when Ballree was selected. Further, Kinney, and her “tribe” were made aware of Ballree using his city car and on city time going to a funeral for a personal friend back in Mount Olive after being hired in BSL. In her “tribe” was then City Manager David Lewis that full well knew he did this and tried to cover it up. When this was brought up at city hall, Joan Kinney, Hank Trosianic, and then commissioner now mayor, Craig Caster, refused to do a thing about it! This is the truth and if the news agencies dig hard enough into this they can find out it is 100% true.

    Thank you Craig, Joan, and Hank for bringing this criminal to our city and paying him to take care of personal business, family crisis, and just generally going to Wal-Mart if and when he felt the need. It came out of the citizens pockets and not yours. But, you really never cared about the citizens did you?

  • Guest2020

    When I posted the other day, I looked at the court calendar and it had his charge as a misdemeanor. I know the final charge isn’t always the same as the initial charge.

    I am glad he got the charge that would prevent him from being a police officer in NC. Chris Thomas is big on preventing dirty cops from ever wearing a badge again.

    Over the years, I have heard people on here speak to a lot of untoward stuff going on in BSL’s government. If it’s not cleaned up yet, I hope y’all can get it straight.

  • Proud BSLer

    Guest 2020 said he/she hoped BSL would clean up their act after this fiasco with Ballree. We have been trying to clean things up for the past 7+ years. Unfortunately there is a small group of “Old Timers”,still following Joan Kinney, that feel this is their city, because they have lived here for 20 or 30 years. They feel they have the right to dictate what goes on here. They want things their way regardless of whether it’s good for all the citizens.They surround themselves with incompetent people who will do their bidding no matter what they ask. In return, they can do whatever they want. Much like Ballree did. You want the police to harass someone speaking out, Ballree will take care of it. Oh I could go on about the graft that permeated this ciy under Kinney and her puppets, but why bother you wih it.She trying to take control again and nobody believes it. Just wait. If she wins again the Ballree story will seem like small change.

  • Bulldreck

    I’ve been living in North Carolina for my entire life. Just so happens that I’ve been near the communities where this SCUM has served. Bout time the “authorities” got something on ole Ballree. Maybe they will finally lock up his son. He son seems to be able to be arrested but nothing seems to happen. Plenty to read on Michael Ballree. Just Goggle his name. Oh by the way, Emmitt Ballree’s daughter is one who has been able to “get off” of her wrong doings. Maybe the family will leave NC and go to say Idaho..


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