Appeal denied, Columbus County sheriff’s race to be certified
COLUMBUS COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — A Wake County Superior Court judge has denied an appeal of the North Carolina State Board of Elections decision to certify Jody Greene as sheriff, according to Columbus County Board of Elections Director Carla Strickland.
Attorneys for election protestor Gloria Smith had filed the motion to delay certification of the contentious Columbus County sheriff’s race.
In November, Greene beat incumbent Lewis Hatcher by 34 votes.
Smith first filed a protest in November regarding problems at a polling site in Tabor City, and later amended her complaint to include questions about Greene’s residency. The board dismissed her protest. She then appealed to the state.
In the meantime, Greene was sworn into office on December 3.
In March, the State Board of Election kicked the protest filed by Smith back to Columbus County.
During the April evidentiary hearing in Columbus County, the board heard testimony and toured the land and campers where Greene says he lives in Cerro Gordo. Ultimately, in a 3-2 vote, the board decided Greene did not meet state requirements of residence to run for office.
The case returned to the State Board of Elections in May, who voted to reverse the local board’s decision that Greene did not meet residency requirements to run for Columbus County sheriff.
After Wednesday’s decision in Wake County court, Strickland says the elections board plans to meet at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday to certify the race, unless another appeal of that denial is filed.