Report sheds new light on trooper harassment claim

Troopers Andrew Smith and Edward Wyrick

July 2, 2011 9:00:00 PM PDT
The Highway Patrol released an arrest report Sunday detailing Trooper Edward Wyrick's side of the investigation following a Raleigh couple's claim of harassment. Gina and Hoyt Tessener filed an eight-page complaint alleging she was harassed by a North Carolina Highway Patrol officer in Wilmington last week. That complaint was sent to Perdue and other public officials for review.

The arrest report released by the Highway Patrol Sunday details Trooper Wyrick's encounter with Tessener on the night of the alleged harassment.

Raleigh lawyer Hoyt Tessener and his wife, Gina, were on the coast for a convention June 21st.

Gina Tessener says she was driving by herself on Highway 74 when she was pulled over by Trooper Wyrick.

Records show Wyrick pulled Tessener over for having a headlight out but smelled alcohol.

The complaint says she refused a breathalyzer, was handcuffed, then arrested, and verbally assaulted the whole time.

"He said well I smell alcohol on your breath," said Tessener.

She says she stayed away from alcohol that night.

"I did admit there was wine on the table, but I didn't drink," said Tessener.

But the DWI report, written by Wyrick, that night says otherwise.

In it, Wyrick writes Gina Tessener said, "I sipped a glass of wine, but didn't drink." The report also states that she was slightly unsteady on her feet.

Gina Tessener later took two blood alcohol tests. The results showed 0.0 both times.

The complaint goes on to say Trooper Wyrick didn't release Tessener after she passed the tests, but rather took her - in handcuffs - to the magistrate, who also verbally attacked her.

Hoyt Tessener was following behind them, when he was pulled over by another Trooper: Andrew Smith.

"He rolls his window up and he smiles and he says, look like your husband just got pulled," Gina Tessener told ABC11. "I said, did you just set my husband up?-and he says, I'm offended that you would say such a thing."

In the DWI report Wyrick wrote that he never made contact with Trooper Smith.

After Gina Tessener was released, the Raleigh couple filed the complaint.

Governor Perdue announced Thursday that Trooper Edward Wyrick and another trooper, who has not been named, have been placed on administrative duty following the Tessener's harrassment claim.

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