The former police chief of the Chadbourn Police Department was arrested Monday by the State Bureau of Investigation on 73 charges that include embezzlement, tampering with evidence and drug violations.
William Anthony Spivey, 35, was arrested about 3:45 p.m. in Fair Bluff by SBI agents with the Coastal District Office, according to a news release.
The SBI said it began looking into possible misconduct at the request of District Attorney Jon David on March 2.
The SBI did not say Monday what prompted David to call for an investigation, but WECT reported March 10 that David “immediately” called for their assistance “after learning about concerning claims involving Chief Spivey.”
A March 4 letter to Chadbourn’s interim town manager, obtained by WWAY TV, shows David was concerned about issues related to the department’s evidence locker and that the police department hadn’t sent narcotics to the state crime lab “for a substantial period of time,” which resulted in the dismissal of “a number of felony drug cases,” according to David’s letter.
Names were redacted in David’s letter, but the district attorney told WECT that Spivey was the subject of the letter, the TV station reported.
David, who represents Brunswick, Columbus and Bladen counties, recommended Spivey be suspended, WECT reported. He was placed on paid administrative leave pending an investigation, WECT reported. He resigned on April 6, WECT reports.
Chadbourn is a town of about 2,000 residents in Columbus County, in the southeastern part of North Carolina. It’s about 130 miles south of Raleigh and about 60 miles north of Myrtle Beach.
Spivey faces the following charges, according to the SBI release: 31 felony counts alter, steal, or destroy evidence; 31 felony counts embezzlement by public official; 4 felony counts trafficking opiates by possession; 4 felony counts trafficking opiates/opioids by transportation; 2 counts obtaining controlled substance by prescription misrepresentation; and 1 count obtaining controlled substance by fraud
Spivey was arrested without incident, the SBI said, and went before a magistrate, where he was issued a $665,000 secured bond. He was transferred to the Columbus County Detention Center.
Spivey was named police chief in 2018, WECT reports.