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Former Bladen officials indicted

Posted September 9, 2011

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— A grand jury has indicted four former officials in Bladen County on charges that they misappropriated public funds, authorities said Friday.

Former Fire Marshal Mitchell Gerald Byrd, 51, of 1340 River Road in White Oak, was charged with 25 counts of obtaining property by false pretense in connection with alleged offenses between November 2005 and March 2009.

Sandra A. Baldwin, 52, of 113 McKay St. East in Elizabethtown, a former counselor for Bladen County Vocational Rehabilitation Services, was charged with 17 counts of obtaining property by false pretense in connection with alleged offenses between August 2009 and June 2010.

Kelly Ard Smith, 41, of 222 Turtle Cove Drive in Elizabethtown, the former vice president of finance at Bladen Community College, was charged with two counts of obtaining property by false pretense in connection with alleged offenses between July and December 2010.

Former Bladen County Schools Superintendent Gregory Alan Killingsworth, 59, of 3599 Barbary Bluff in Hope Mills, was charged with one count of obtaining property by false pretense in connection with a July 2010 incident.

Authorities didn't provide details of the alleged offenses.

"It is vital to hold public servants accountable for their behavior. No one is above the law, particularly those of us who have been entrusted with the public’s confidence," Bladen County District Attorney Jon David said in a statement.

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  • Rebelyell55 Sep 9, 2011

    Contact your local Rep. in Raleigh and demand strong anti-corruption laws and sentences. If not we'll be just like the country south of the boarder. They had this in front of them before, but shot it down for fear they would have to face their own laws.

  • beargun Sep 9, 2011

    Taterheadmommy being Democrat has nothing to do with it. There are plenty of crooked Republicans out there.

    The ex-Fire Marshal has been investigated in a number of other counties for other things. There should be alot of other things uncovered surrounding him.

  • emerald7575 Sep 9, 2011

    sounds like Wake and Wayne County

  • tatermommy52 Sep 9, 2011

    They are all registered Democrats.

  • girlwonders Sep 9, 2011

    Funny that these people were in the education field. What great influences for our children in Bladen county. Killingsworth for instance was the kind of man who was never available to work with a parent and the parent/child was always wrong. You had to bring a lawyer to have a conversation with him. I don't miss the days of having a child in that school system.

  • Lead by Example Sep 9, 2011

    I'm sure plea bargains will occur, but anyone going to trial needs the max sentence if convicted.

  • dollibug Sep 9, 2011

    This is probably just a DROP in the BUCKET....who happened to get caught....and we wonder what is wrong with AMERICA?

  • Rebelyell55 Sep 9, 2011

    One county down, 99 more to go, check em all.

  • puzzled Sep 9, 2011

    What in the world did they steal or misappropriate?