Board of elections rejects protest filed to disqualify Jody Greene from holding office as Columbus County Sheriff
WHITEVILLE, NC (WWAY) — The Columbus County Board of Elections discussed a protest filed to disqualify Jody Greene from holding office at its meeting on Monday night.
The protest was filed by Columbus County NAACP Second Vice President Herman Lewis after Greene won his re-election earlier this month following his suspension and later resignation after a recording of a phone call from 2019 surfaced with Greene allegedly making racially charged comments about sheriff’s office employees.
“A man who should have been permanently removed from office was wrongly permitted to run again—a man who is known to bear extreme antipathy toward Black residents and has acted on that antipathy in a multitude of ways—and won in a county marked by significant racially polarized voting,” the protest states. “This man, S. Jody Greene, was suspended by a Superior Court judge, but tried to game the system and avoid the full consequences of his misconduct by resigning on the day the removal proceeding would have been carried to completion.”
The Board of Elections voted to reject the protest two to one, with two board members abstaining from the vote.
State and local NAACP leaders were disappointed by the outcome and by how the meeting was handled, saying they felt the board was unprepared and ill-equipped to handle the issue.
“Was that a meeting? Really, a meeting? It was awful. I mean, no response to the questions that were asked. I don’t think they were prepared for any questions to be asked,” Herman Lewis said.
Though disappointed, not discouraged. NC NAACP President Deborah Dicks Maxwell says the fight is not over.
“No one deserves to be in office [and] use such inflammatory statements. We are supportive of all people of Columbus County because they deserve equity, they deserve fairness,” Maxwell said. “The NAACP stands for fighting against racial hatred and racial discrimination which was exhibited by the comments made.”
The petitioners can appeal the Board of Elections’ decision, but they have not yet announced if they plan to do so.
WWAY has reached out to Jody Greene for comment but has not yet heard back.
The Columbus County NAACP will host a meeting on Tuesday, November 29 at the Brunswick Waccamaw Association building in Whiteville at 6 pm.