North Carolina Department of Correction News - May 1999

News Briefs

Probation officer helps capture "road rage" shooter

Officer recovers misplaced radio

Marion superintendent inducted into Hall of Fame

Officer finds phony money

Four people have been arrested by Virginia authorities after a Dan River Prison Work Farm correctional officer found a box of counterfeit money March 17.

Correctional officer James Fitzgerald had taken his community work squad to the junction of N.C. 29 and Candy Creek Road in Rockingham County to pick up litter from the roadside.

"We were putting the work sign out by the side of the road. I had pulled over to let the inmates put the sign out. As I unlocked the trailer, I saw the box by the guard rail and went over and picked it up. I looked in it and saw the money," said Fitzgerald who first thought the money was real.

When Fitzgerald returned to the prison, he turned the box over to his supervisor who called the sheriff’s department. Investigators determined the box contained $29,080 in counterfeit one hundred and twenty dollar bills and called the U.S. Secret Service.

Two days later, Martinsville, Va., sheriff’s deputies arrested two men from Reidsville, N.C., and two women from Bassett, Va., and charged them with conspiracy and uttering false currency.

Probation officer helps capture "road rage" shooter

R. David Felts, a probation officer with Judicial District 13, recently helped capture an accused "road rage" shooter.

Felts was traveling on N.C. 211 near Southport when he heard a warning over his radio to be on the lookout for a man driving a white Acura automobile. The man had apparently shot another driver in an act of road rage after the two had exchanged obscene hand gestures.

Felts spotted the Acura and began following the vehicle. He then notified the sheriff’s department of the Acura’s location. After following the car for several minutes, the driver stopped his vehicle.

"He actually stopped about 100 yards in front of my car," Felts said. "He backed up to my car."

The driver emerged from the Acura, and on Felts’ command, showed Felts that he had no weapon. As Felts ordered the man to lie on the ground, an off-duty Brunswick County sheriff’s detective arrived on the scene. The two unarmed officers searched the man and held him until backup officers arrived.

Officer recovers misplaced radio

Officer Terry Stamey of Marion Correctional Institution had a work squad picking up litter along I-40 near the Burke and McDowell county line when he spotted an object in the grass. It was a walkie-talkie that had Buladean Fire Department written on it. Stamey made sure the radio was returned to the Bakersville-area volunteer firemen. The fire department's chief, L.G. Sheets, said a fireman was headed into work three weeks earlier and accidentally placed the radio on top of his car. The car traveled 60 miles before the radio fell where Stamey found it. Chief Sheets said the radio survived the fall and several days of rain.

Marion superintendent inducted into Hall of Fame

Dean Walker, superintendent of Marion Correctional Institution, was inducted into the 1999 Officer Candidate School Hall of Fame at Fort Benning, Ga., April 16.

Induction into the OCS Hall of Fame is the single highest honor bestowed on an OCS graduate. The Hall of Fame recognizes leadership excellence in both the military and civilian public service.

Walker, a retired colonel with the U.S. Army National Guard, attended the OCS at Fort Benning in 1967 after completing his enlisted service with the U.S. Army. He put in 27.5 years of service with the Army National Guard before his retirement in July 1995. u

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