COLUMBUS COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — Seven months after he won the Columbus County Sheriff’s race and six months after he was sworn into office, Jody Greene is now the undisputed sheriff of Columbus County.
Early Thursday morning the Columbus County Board of Elections met to certify the contested race.
Applause broke out at the board of elections as Sheriff Greene was handed his certificate of election.
In November, Greene beat incumbent Lewis Hatcher by 34 votes.
Soon after that, voter Gloria Smith filed a protest regarding problems at a polling site in Tabor City, and later amended her complaint to include questions about Greene’s residency.
Smith then filed a motion to delay certification of the race. That motion was denied on Wednesday.
With the election now certified, Greene says he’s ready to get back to work.
“We finally have been vindicated, all the false accusations that were made against us. Putting all that behind us, ready to move forward, do the right thing for the citizens of our county,” said Sheriff Jody Greene. “I’d like to thank all of our supporters, without them, we wouldn’t be here. A lot of prayer, and just doing the right thing.”
Greene says the entire process has been difficult on him, his family, and especially his staff.
“If it hadn’t have been for my command staff, secretaries, they held it together in my absence,” Greene said. “It means a lot. We got a strong team and they’re not going to break.”
Former Sheriff Lewis Hatcher was not present at today’s meeting.
Greene says he hopes he can win over those who didn’t vote for him in November.