COLUMBUS COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — Another fallout from the scandal involving absentee ballots in last month’s election. The State Board of Elections is now saying the Columbus County sheriff’s race should not have been certified.
This latest news is coming from Jackie Bozeman, the acting elections director in Columbus County.
Bozeman says the State Board of Elections told her late Thursday morning the election should not have been certified because of the protest and appeals.
At this time, the Columbus County Board of Elections will not be issuing a certificate to Sheriff Jody Greene.
According to State Board of Elections Spokesman Patrick Gannon, Greene should not have been sworn in.
The State Board reportedly informed the county board this week not to issue a certificate of election in that race, as there is a pending election protest.
“My understanding is that the county has not issued a certificate in that race, and thus he should not have been sworn in,” Gannon said. “Sheriff [Lewis] Hatcher should still be serving as sheriff.”
Greene beat Lewis Hatcher by 34 votes.
Since then, there are have questions swirling around whether the newly elected sheriff actually called Columbus County home. He and his wife, Angie Greene, told WWAY they did.
WWAY reached out to Greene who said his attorney has advised him not to comment on the matter.
We reached out to Hatcher, who provided us with the following statement:
“As long as things are done right, and done fairly, I have no problem with it. But I just feel like whatever rules that apply to me should apply to whoever else is running for the office, or anybody else. Laws were put in place for a reason.”
We will continue to update this story as more information becomes available.