Local Politics

Fayetteville manager resigns over consent searches

Posted March 9, 2012 5:11 p.m. EST
Updated March 12, 2012 6:13 a.m. EDT

— City Manager Dale Iman submitted his resignation Friday following what sources call a rift between him and the Fayetteville City Council over police searches during traffic stops.

Iman, who has overseen daily operations of Fayetteville government since late 2006, is expected to leave office next week.

The Fayetteville City Council voted 8-2 in January to halt searches of vehicles where drivers have given their consent for 120 days while a consultant investigated claims that the practice disproportionately targets black drivers.

Police Chief Tom Bergamine and the North Carolina Police Benevolent Association decried the council's decision, saying it was unlawful and that consent searches are an important law enforcement tool. They filed a lawsuit seeking to resume the practice, and a judge last week granted an injunction to allow the searches to continue.

Sources within City Hall have said City Council members became frustrated with Iman's handling of the consent search issue and wanted him to leave – the council held a closed-door meeting Monday night – but no council member would comment publicly on the situation.