A North Carolina sheriff has been arrested after he attempted to persuade another man to kill a former deputy who possessed a recording of the sheriff making “racially offensive” remarks, The Raleigh News & Observer reported Monday.
Prosecutors said Monday that Granville County Sheriff Brindell Wilkins, a self-described Trump supporter, allegedly told his co-conspirator “the only way you gonna stop him is kill him” in a phone call in reference to former deputy Joshua Freeman.
In the phone call, the unnamed man allegedly told Wilkins when he planned to kill the deputy and described the gun he planned to use. In response, Wilkins allegedly advised the man how to get away with the killing, telling him to be sure to dispose of the weapon afterwards.
Wilkins also allegedly advised the man that “the only way we find out these murder things is people talk … you can’t tell nobody nothing, not a thing.”
Wake County district attorney Lorrin Freeman has charged Wilkins with two counts of felony obstruction of justice for offering advice on how to get away with the killing, which was never carried out, and for not arresting or reporting the threat.
Wilkins, who was recently re-elected in 2018, was released on a $20,000 bond and continues to serve as sheriff.
“Technically, he can continue to serve if he chooses to until convicted,” the district attorney told the News & Observer.
Wake County prosecutors took over the 10-month investigation in 2018 after Granville County district attorney Mike Waters disclosed that he represented Freeman in private practice the same year he handed over the recording to the FBI.