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Cutbacks and unsolved cases

Posted on April 10, 2022

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Have cutbacks in a small Cumberland County town affected investigations, including a case of a woman’s skeleton found in the woods four decades ago?

Click this sentence to read the news story.

Hunters found the skeleton in a wooded area off of N.C. 210 on Oct. 22, 1979. Her cause of death remains unknown.

The town froze half a dozen vacant positions in the police department last year as it struggles with finances in a shrinking local economy.

State Treasurer Dale Folwell said in a news release last summer that he has “deep concerns over potential budget deficits, longstanding fiscal disarray and an investigation into missing money.”

The situation hasn’t improved. In mid-March, N.C. Auditor Beth Wood told the state’s Local Government Commission that she found the town’s former finance director had used at least $430,112 of the town’s money for personal use.

The town has seen similar situations. In 2009, the town’s police department was suspended after the arrest of a sergeant for embezzlement.

Today, the town, which sits just outside Fort Bragg, has 12,000 residents and around two dozen police officers.

 

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