Local News

Charges dropped against former Spring Lake officer

Posted April 18, 2013

— Criminal charges have been dropped against one of two Spring Lake police officers indicted in a 2009 state investigation that roiled the police department and the town.

Darryl Eugene Coulter Sr. had been charged in connection with an April 2008 home invasion in which three men were held at gunpoint and was accused of asking subordinate officers to falsify a report about a September 2008 raid on a motel room.

Defense attorney D.W. Bray said a 911 dispatcher corroborated Coulter's story that officers had been told that a shooting had taken place at the home. The homeowner gave officers access to the house, but the people inside were acting suspiciously, so they were detained, Bray said.

Cumberland County prosecutors couldn't be reached for comment.

Another Spring Lake officer, Alphonzo Devonne Whittington Jr., pleaded guilty three years ago to stealing $2,900 from the evidence room and altering records to cover up the theft.

The money was part of an undercover sting by the State Bureau of Investigation, which was looking into possible corruption in the department.

Police Chief A.C. Brown resigned the day after the officers were arrested, and Cumberland County authorities assumed control of law enforcement in Spring Lake for about nine months.

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  • dwr1964 Apr 19, 7:45 p.m.

    This is going to drag out for years until it is all but forgotten. Mostly because there were OFFICIAL people involved but also, something was going on more than this that deserves a cover-up.

  • Lightfoot3 Apr 19, 1:16 p.m.

    "Why were the charges dropped?" - mojaintsmall


    Good question. I can see part of them being dropped because of the 911 operator confirmation, but what about the part where he's alleged to have asked others to falsify a report? If they're now claiming he didn't do it, then others were lying when they said he did. If so, they should be punished for lying.

  • Sherlock Apr 19, 11:37 a.m.

    So, does he get his job back after being accused of this crime?

  • mojaintsmall Apr 19, 11:28 a.m.

    Why were the charges dropped? It is really interesting how charges are either never brought up or dropped time and again when the crime involves a so called officer of the law!