ASHEVILLE, MONDAY — Ask around, and you’ll find nobody can remember the last time the Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office was rocked by a scandal of such magnitude.
Deputies with the Sheriff’s Office have been using their patrol cars to drop their kids off at school, and Sheriff Van Duncan, along with many others in the local community, don’t see what the big deal is.
“Look, it’s not like this office has a history of inappropriately using our squad cars to make personal trips, or drive to Cherokee on the clock to gamble, or run large criminal syndicates, or accept bribes in parking lots, or spy on state law enforcement officials who might be investigating us, so what’s the big deal?” Duncan recently asked.
Historically and without even a hiccup of doubt over the last several decades, employees of the Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office have been trusted, respected and admired by the public for their honesty, integrity and fundraising prowess.
“I see no harm in having our officers extend their presence to our local schools by dropping their kids off in the morning,” Duncan continued. “It’s a good way to let parents and teachers know that we’re not here to shake you down or to beat you because of how you display the flag. It’s desensitization, and without it, we can’t hardly even sneak up on lawabiding folks anymore.”
Some citizens point out the confusion that can be created by using a lawenforcement vehicle for personal matters.
“Well, when I see a Buncombe County Sheriff’s S.U.V. parked around back of an illegal gambling house, are they there on a bust or to double-down?” one county resident asked. “It’s a little confusing.”
But for others, seeing a Buncombe County Sheriff’s vehicle in an unexpected location one wouldn’t normally expect has a nerve-soothing quality.
“You make that long walk in the Harrah’s parking lot at night, and you’re plenty happy to see lots of Buncombe County patrol cars parked around,” said one man. “Same for outside the methadone clinic.”
Citizens are especially angry with Buncombe County Manager Wanda Greene, because the children of the deputies involved will have to drop out of school if their daddies can’t deliver them to school in a squad car every day.
“We really should have some type of public bussing or big yellow transportation- type things for school children, but sadly we do not,” said one man.
Deputies feel their activities need no scrutiny or oversight.
“I don’t see the big deal in dropping off my kid on my way to work, or blowing through intersections with a little halfsiren when I’m a few minutes behind,” one deputy said, before pointing out that he has not once been the subject of a federal grand jury in