FBI can ‘neither confirm nor deny’ probe of former County Manager Greene

DENIED CONFIRMATION: While the SBI alluded to "the Wanda Greene case," the FBI can "neither confirm nor deny" an investigation concerning the former Buncombe County manager is taking place. File photo courtesy of Buncombe County Photo courtesy of Buncombe County

The Federal Bureau of Investigation appears to have opened a case involving former Buncombe County Manager Wanda Greene, according to information from the N.C. State Bureau of Investigation.

Xpress has received information from two credible sources who wish to remain anonymous that there is an investigation focused on Greene. The SBI responded to an inquiry by email: “The FBI’s [spokesperson] is handling media calls about the Wanda Greene case,” suggesting that a case has indeed been opened.

However, Xpress spoke with an FBI public information officer who said, “Per Department of Justice policy, the FBI can neither confirm nor deny” any such investigation.

Buncombe County District Attorney Todd Williams told Xpress, “Sorry, I cannot comment. Thank you.”

Commission Chair Brownie Newman told Xpress: “Michael Frue, staff attorney for the county, has asked that media questions be referred to him. I cannot comment.”

County Manager Mandy Stone did not respond to Xpress.

Xpress also called a number believed to be Greene’s to ask for comment. After asking “May I please speak with Wanda,” the woman answering asked who was calling. After identifying as “Dan with Mountain Xpress,” the person replied, “No,” and hung up.

We sent Greene an email with the subject line “Xpress Article – FBI Case.” No response has been received yet.

Greene announced her retirement on May 30, stating her last day would be on June 30. Greene was employed by the county for 23 years and served as county manager for 20 years.

Xpress has not been able to confirm whether others might be involved or what potential wrongdoing is at the center of the apparent investigation.

This is an ongoing story, and Xpress will provide updates as information becomes available.


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About Dan Hesse
I grew up outside of Atlanta and moved to WNC in 2001 to attend Montreat College. After college, I worked at NewsRadio 570 WWNC as an anchor/reporter and covered Asheville City Council and the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners starting in 2004. During that time I also completed WCU's Master of Public Administration program. You can reach me at dhesse@mountainx.com.

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27 thoughts on “FBI can ‘neither confirm nor deny’ probe of former County Manager Greene

  1. Deplorable Infidel

    Oh MY…say it ain’t SO! she’s the darling of all the lefties! Hope she is not in trouble, unless she is…

    oh the intrique! oh the timing! is she a registered
    democrackkk too ?

    so she wouldn’t come to the phone, huh? that speaks volumes right there …

    stay on her a** for comment! greatest news of today right here!

    • Lulz

      Shocking I tell ya LOL. I thought these people are as pure as the driven snow.

      Next up, investigate the man that really made some bank while in office. Newman.

      • Lulz

        To say that her and Newman aren’t spending spree twins is an understatement. It was probably his idea to give her a 35K pay raise.

        Until you start holding people with a D next to their name to some accountability, expect more corruption to occur. After all if they’re safe from people calling them out on it, then you shouldn’t expect them to actually have integrity. Especially the longer they’re in government.

        • luther blissett

          “Until you start holding people with a D next to their name to some accountability, expect more corruption to occur. ”

          Again with that “you.” The self-proclaimed champion of the working stiff is apparently powerless here, was powerless last year when there were county elections, and is powerless this year when there are city elections. Maybe that’s because SPCOTWS doesn’t really care as long as he can moan?

          There are obvious structural challenges with the “manager” model of local government where elected officials have control of policy and senior staff have broad autonomy on implementation. It’s not clear they can be addressed without changes further up the ladder.

          Anyway, Wanda Greene’s preference for Comic Sans in official county documents should count as a low-grade misdemeanor.

          • Lulz

            LOL, there are no challenges to being honest and having integrity unless of course one can get away with being a corrupt goon. And with a local media along with a large group of mouthpieces there to defend them at every turn, they feel comfortable in doing so. Like I said, if they find filth on Greene expect to see a lot more unraveling of the corruption that goes beyond just her. We have lots of years of the same people serving in both council and the commission. And a few that have been in both. One particular person has become a millionaire while in office. And also has been a huge part of the “green” energy industry. Too bad the green he has been after is paper.

  2. BMacAVL

    “Until you start holding people with a D next to their name to some accountability, expect more corruption to occur. After all if they’re safe from people calling them out on it, then you shouldn’t expect them to actually have integrity. Especially the longer they’re in government.”

    @Lulz, are you implying that the GOP is not corrupt, ever, in the history of this country? Asking for a friend…LULZ:)

    Career politicians are, by definition, all corrupt and always have been due to the fact they only do & say things to help them/party cronies get back into office for the next term.

    Our country is divided between two parties and that is good for our government as a whole. The more the two sides bicker(hold the other in contempt/play the blame game; since we know both have problems, don’t kid yourself) and the rest of the population remains on the sidelines, history in american politics will continue to repeat itself.

    The thing to remember is a divided population helps keep the population from joining together to fight the true greed/evil in our country. The progress & change all these career politicians(or winner of the last popularity contest to fool the sheep) promise over and over will only happen if the two parties agree that both sides are truly slaves to the military industrial government complex as a whole regardless of party affiliation.

    Stop listening to the media(remember the government is the FCC) and start talking to brothers/sisters/etc. on the other side of your personal conviction about differences with an open mind, to understand, and create an open judgement free dialog. Mob mentality does not solve anything and actually creates additional strain on all fragile relationships talking politics or otherwise. Extremists on both sides of the debate will continue to fuel those who listen to the media’s spoon fed garbage. Propaganda 101!

    Love others and treat everyone(regardless of political affiliation/sexual orientation/race/ethnicity/tax bracket) with respect. It’s so hard, I struggle(like most of us) with this daily but it is so important for the future to reverse our backwards our nation. I find it inspiring me to rise above the hating of those I don’t 100% agree with personally. Basically don’t be a single sided, black & white, I’m better than you, do as I say & not as I do, my opinion is the only CORRECT opinion, follower…dare to be different, dare to understand, listen to understand, treat everyone with respect type of human…the rest will take care of itself in good time if we all adapt this ideology.

    “Don’t forget your history. Know your destiny. In the abundance of water, The fool is thirsty. Rat race…” – R. Marley

    “Until the philosophy which hold one race superior, and another….Inferior. Is finally. And permanently Discredited And abandoned – Everywhere is War.
    That until there no longer, First class and second class citizens of any nation -War.
    Until the colour of a man’s skin, Is of no more significance than the colour of his eyes -War.
    That until the basic human rights, Are equally guaranteed to all, Without regard to race -War.
    That until that day,. The dream of lasting peace, World citizenship. Rule of international morality.
    Will remain in but a fleeting illusion to be pursued, but never attained, Now everywhere is War.”
    – R. Marley

    • Lulz

      I only exhibit disdain for goons that seek to tax me out of my home and think nothing of it. As if making people homeless is why government exists.

  3. This sounds like a set up:

    1. Ms. Anonymous has some difficulty with Wanda Greene in her official capacity as county manager.

    2. Ms. Anonymous makes unfounded allegations about the now retired Wanda Greene that Ms. Anonymous thinks should be of interest to the F.B.I.

    3. The F.B.I. opens an investigation to discover the truth or falsity of Ms. Anonymous’ attention-getting allegations.

    4. Ms. Anonymous then secretly tips off a local media outlet to the fact that the F.B.I. has opened an investigation on pensioner Wanda Greene without offering any details.

    5. The Mountain Xpress publishes basically a ‘nothing story’ that states that no one interviewed can talk about the investigation that Ms. Anonymous triggered and then anonymously leaked about to the press, and which is now arousing in the minds of readers a vague suspicion of wrongdoing by a former public figure.

    6. Nothing comes of the investigation and no follow-up article is published.

  4. Don Yelton

    holding people accountable has nothing to do with the D or R or UNA. We have the duty to know who we vote for, the elected commission then in turn tells the manager what to do. Dig Deeper and you will find racketeering by some commissioners. I offer a tape to the FBI documenting how a contractor had to buy favors for a contract. But the FBI refused to listen to the tape, Charles Taylor did not want to listen to it with the press present, and David Gant refused to listen to it. It was given to some attorneys that were investigating garbage and I told them you have a copy of it lets see if you do anything with. MUM from them. They are looking for a scapegoat for the previously elected commissioners. We just might have buildings and parks named after them. Should we look at removing those names. I hate to do it but I agree with Tim Peck, cover up and nothing will come of it.

    • bsummers

      I hate to do it but I agree with Tim Peck

      Don’t do it, Don! Come back to the light!!

      • NFB

        Yeah, this is giving me pause as well. I had to read that post several times to make sure I wasn’t missing something.

    • Lulz

      County government stinks. If the Feds find filth on Greene, expect a whole lotta people to go with her. That crony Newman needs to serve prison time IMO.

  5. Landis v Buncombe County NC Govt, et al 16-7987 A copy to the Attorney General’s office has been taken seriously. May they ALL… Reap What They Sowed. Looking forward to see who all squeals to save themselves from prosecution. For too long officials have acted against color of law and the people turned a blind eye. Now let the spotlight shine on their corruption and Justice for the people be served.

  6. Tsalagi justice

    The stink of corruption arose with Medford and still smells. Abuse of Federal money is the least. Attacking truth teller the worst.
    Bout time karma ran over the dogma of the rich and corrupt elite in Casheville

  7. jan kubiniec

    I’m Jan (howard) Kubiniec on the ballot. Beholden to neither party. The FBI doesn’t respond to crank calls. Nobody is above the law …not even in Asheville.

  8. Since many readers are new to Asheville and to Mountain Xpress, allow me to present my observation and experience. There once was a public access media center in Asheville. It was based on a First Amendment platform and provided professional equipment to allow the citizens of the local community, who paid to produce many different viewpoints and topics not presented on mass media. Religion, race, homeless or creed, everyone was allowed to become a member. It was available on Charter cable and streamed live on the internet. There were live call in TV shows with International viewers and participants. There was also a radio station for those who wished remain anonymous. URTV, Western North Carolina Community Media Center became a model public access station in the United States. https://www.youtube.com/user/WNCMediaCenter

    Some TV shows discussed local politics and mishandling of funds was often a topic. Along with former DA Ron Moore as the drug kingpin. https://mountainx.com/news/communitynews/xpress_investigating_local_emails_with_allegations_about_ron_moore/ After interviewing many fact witnesses, who were from different socioeconimic, race and location all stating the same information regarding his criminal activities, it’s not a rumor, it becomes fact, just start asking people.

    Wanda Greene and Kathy Hughes have patted each other’s backs for years. The only way to silence the people from exposing the corruption was to deny the media center the money that was owed, to force a shutdown. A smoke and mirrors show with disgruntled producers providing the necessary slander needed to distract the public, with mass media not reporting the whole truth of the matter. They then privileged themselves with an “award winning” government TV channel that provides acceptable public access media. Watch it and see how much government programing is really provided.

    What they did was wrong and they know it. They tried to appease the people by naming the City as co-conspirators when they stated the City was putting out a RFP for a “new” media center. Everything they wanted had already been provided by URTV. Even though a couple of applications exceeded the requirements, the City pulled the plug on any public access media center. Information will show how the City and County worked hand in hand to deny the citizens their free speech little by little.

    Starting on June 7, 2011, when former chairman David Gantt, admittedly denied my 1st Amendment at the commissioner’s meeting after I said to Wanda Greene, “you can sit there with a smile on your face”. I wonder if she is smiling now. Another meeting I was thrown out of, when I spoke up after 4 out of 8 public speakers were thrown out of the meeting because of the words they had spoken. They were determined to silence me.

    When the Occupy movement started in Asheville, I was targeted when I was acting as a citizen journalist. I knew there was supposed to be a march, but I had distanced myself from the group. (too many egos battling for control of the uncontrollable) I just happened to catch the last 5 minutes of the march and thankfully provided the video evidence necessary to be acquitted, after being served with 3 warrants for my arrest. Standing on a highway brandishing a weapon, shouting threats of murder, to incite a riot, resisting a police officer and impeding traffic. False testimony was given to acquire the warrants. If the video evidence held by the AVL police were released, it would prove they had no evidence of my involvement and they knew it.

    On June 9, 2011, I filed a civil lawsuit pro se in Federal Court, Landis v. Buncombe County NC Government et al,1:2014 cv 00146. Going through the court process with no legal knowledge, indecipherable rules of procedure, and no outside help made the process challenging to say the least. My request for rehearing in the Supreme Court was dismissed the same day they upheld Trump’s travel ban, on their last day of court before summer vacation. If Wanda Greene, and all the others are finally held accountable for their corruption, then all the hard work and sacrifice will be worth it.

    • Lulz

      Hope she goes to the slammer along with Gant, Newman, and a whole host of shills. And let’s all hope this is just the beginning of the unraveling of what has been 2 decades of democrat control of the area. Lots of corruption in both city and the county. And lots of mouthpieces that overlook it. Mission, Biltmore, non profits, the art museum, a few realtors and developers, and plenty of cronies have ate at the handout trough of local government. It’s time these people pay. The cash cow of stolen money from taxpayers to give to these scumbags needs to end.

      • luther blissett

        Either you care about all your never-ending insinuations and complaints sufficiently to take a stand in ways that go beyond grousing on a message board, or you don’t. Since the filing deadline has passed, we know which applies.

        • Lulz

          LOL why yes because I’m the only person in the area who opposes these goons in government. I don’t need to run for anything merely because the cronies are about to hang themselves. Greene goes down, lots of others go with her. And more than just this case gets exposed. Probably all kinds of back room deals, shenanigans, and payoffs. Just because outsiders come here and think they’re above us mere peons, doesn’t mean they are. It just means they come here and bully others around. But it’s also why they’re corrupt as hell and a Newman has become very wealthy while in office. For that to be ignored by left wingers tells me that they themselves are unwilling to look under that stone for fear of what they might find. But don’t worry, I’m sure the Feds will. One day.

          • Alan Ditmore

            Newman is a liberal and true leftists of the kind now running for city council ar not allied with and will not cover up for liberals. Leftists owe even less to Gantt and Greene.

    • The correct date of the first filing is June 9, 2014. Sorry about the mixup, it’s been a long 6 year battle seeking justice. The wheel of Karma sometimes moves as slow as the court system. Eventually all karma comes back for what we sow. Sometimes when a person is so devious the fluff adds up until the scales read the true balance and slam down in judgment. It makes you wonder if Wanda will squeal on Ron Moore and David Gantt to save herself. I hope they lay out the evidence for the citizens to see and judge. Even though she is a certified fraud examiner, I was given faulty and questionable financial reports regarding BCTV. They have resigned but their actions are memorable and the paper trail is long. Those interviewed may claim surprise, but when their names come up as co-conspirators, what will they claim then?

      • Alan Ditmore

        URTV was unsustainably spendthrift, which was obvious from the square footage of their downtown studios alone. If they had rented a smaller space, they would still be here.

      • Tsalagisister

        Yes.You and I have seen similar retaliatory action for free speech.
        I’ve got confidence that these fools are so transparent,they make Saran Wrap look opaque.

        Years ago, I was so repaired against it caused serious health issues.
        If these criminals Wil harass ordinary folks for telling the truth, then you can figure they fear the retribution for their crimes.
        I’m glad karma runs over dogma every time.
        It isn’t over.
        The Feds are no fools.
        Bless them.

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