Former sheriff candidate arrested in Columbus County

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WHITEVILLE, NC (WWAY) — A former Columbus County sheriff candidate was arrested at his home this morning.

According to Whiteville Police Chief Jeffrey Rosier, Calvin Norton was arrested on SBI warrants for two counts of exploiting a disabled person, two counts of uttering forged documents, one count of forgery and one count of obtaining property by false pretense.

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After he bonded out of the Columbus County jail today, we spoke with Norton by phone. Norton said that the claims against him were untrue, saying, “There is no legal validity to these statements.”

Norton says he was taking care of two people and did not exploit them. Norton said he even lived in their home to help them out.

Now, he said he is looking to file his own legal paperwork when he figures out who is behind the claims. Norton said he will be pursing a defamation of character claim.

Norton said his first court appearance is set for this Friday.

Norton was one of four candidates to challenge Columbus County Sheriff Lewis Hatcher in last May’s Democratic Party primary. Norton finished last with about one percent of the votes cast.

Last fall Norton also claimed Rosier, who is currently the administrator chief in Whiteville as he waits for his North Carolina law enforcement certificate, pulled him over in South Carolina. Rosier has denied the allegation. In November Norton filed a federal lawsuit against Rosier and the City of Whiteville. A judge dismissed the case last month. Last week Norton filed an appeal to the US 4th Circuit Court of Appeals.

Rosier says the lawsuit and today’s arrest are unrelated.