Deputy involved in Harnett County shooting resigns

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A Harnett County deputy resigns amid a firestorm of departmental scrutiny.

Blaming the "environment created by a dishonest media" and saying he's putting fellow officers at risk, a Harnett County deputy involved in the shooting death of a man in November has resigned.

A grand jury declined to indict Deputy Nicholas Kehagias in April in the shooting death of 33-year-old John Livingston. He could have faced second-degree murder charges.

Livingston was shot on his West Everett Drive front porch in November during a fight with two Harnett County deputies who were reportedly looking for another man who had previously resided in the home.

When Livingston told the deputies the man did not live there, and they could not come in the home without a search warrant, authorities kicked in the front door and the fight ensued.

RELATED: Harnett County deputy will not be indicted in shooting death of Lillington man

"Over the last three years it has been my great honor and joy to serve the citizens of Harnett County as a member of this Office. I have taken great pride in my job and in doing everything I could to enforce North Carolina laws, but more importantly, in helping every person I was able," wrote Kehagias in his resignation letter.

"As such, it is incredibly difficult for me to do this, but I cannot risk putting my fellow law enforcement officers in increased danger due to the environment created by a dishonest media and a baseless lawsuit, combined with the dangerous rhetoric or actions of certain person(s) in the community," he continued.

His last day will be June 30.

Since a grand jury declined to indict Kehagias, the FBI has opened an investigation amid a wider probe of allegations about the use of force by law enforcement in the county.

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