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Former deputy “blindsided” after Beaufort County sheriff fires five employees

The terminated employee said he wasn’t given a reason, notice, or chance to talk to the Sheriff.
Published: May. 10, 2021 at 5:56 PM EDT|Updated: May. 11, 2021 at 11:42 AM EDT
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BEAUFORT COUNTY, N.C. (WITN) - After the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office fired five employees, four of whom were family members, one former deputy said he still has not received a reason why.

Corey Rogerson said he has served in law enforcement for 12 years, two of which were at the sheriff’s office. He explained he felt blindsided by last week’s termination.

“I was told I probably had a bunch of questions, but unfortunately, they didn’t have any answers for me,” said Rogerson.

“When you lose half your income on a family with a two-and-a-half-year-old, it stings a little bit.”

Rogerson and four others were fired last Tuesday. Others let go were Corporal Darin Hall, Corporal Daniel Babos, Detention Officer James Rogerson, and Administrative Assistant Kasie Babos.

“For a local community to lose a veteran officer, a good guy, a good cop, in a time when we need good cops more than ever...it’s just reckless,” said Rogerson’s wife, Meredith.

Under North Carolina law, the sheriff’s office employs “at will,” which means they can legally let go of employees without giving them a reason.

WITN has reached out to the sheriff and the chief deputy at the sheriff’s office for their input but has not heard back.

TUESDAY STORY

Dismissal letters for five Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office employees have finally been made public.

The five employees, three deputies, a detention officer, and an administrative assistant, were fired a week ago.

All the letters, dated May 4th, are exactly alike, and state no reason for the action. They were signed by Chief Deputy Charlie Rose.

“This letter is your formal notification of the immediate termination of your appointment as an employee with the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office. Your services are no longer required. I wish the best for you on your future endeavors.”

Among the five dismissed were two veteran employees, one with more than 15 years with the office and another with more than 12 years.

The release of public records comes six days after WITN initially requested them. Under North Carolina law, if a public employee is terminated then their dismissal letter is subject to the Open Records Law.

So far, the sheriff’s office has not publicly said why the five employees were let go. It comes after the sheriff, county commissioners, and the school board had a dispute over school resource officers and their funding.

MONDAY STORY

Beaufort County Sheriff Ernie Coleman has fired at least five employees.

After a public records request, Beaufort County Human Resources confirmed that the sheriff dismissed the five employees we had names for.

Included were two veteran employees, one with more than 15 years with the office and another with more than 12 years.

Last Wednesday, WITN reached out to Chief Deputy Charlie Rose to confirm the firings and try to find out if this had anything to do with recent budget issues with county commissioners involving school resource officers. So far, we have not heard back from Rose.

The county says the employees, Corporal Darin Hall, Corporal Daniel Babos, Deputy Corey Rogerson, Detention Officer James Rogerson, and Administrative Assistant Kasie Babos, were let go on May 4th.

The human resources director says they did not receive dismissal letters, “as is customary” with the personnel action forms which they received today. Those letters are public records under North Carolina law.

The five employees had no previous disciplinary actions, according to county records.

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