Fayetteville Ticketgate concludes


Cumberland County D.A. Ed Grannis dropped all charges in the case just a few hours ago.

Last October, a ticket issued to a friend of Fayetteville Mayor Tony Chavonne was voided after the Mayor asked the city manager and police chief to get involved.

A ticket was later given to another driver and the scandal caused a huge public outcry.

In December, the D.A. said he would conduct his own independent into the accident. It was impossible to conclude who caused the wreck.

"These investigators have interviewed every known witness," Ed Grannis, Cumberland D.A., said. "The witnesses are very conscious folks, but they are in total conflict with what they saw, and there is no way you can [determine] either defendant's responsibility in these traffic charges to a moral certainty."

The City of Fayetteville issued the following response to Ticketgate:

"As expressed by the District Attorney, the focus of the investigation was to determine whether he could successfully meet the burden of establishing beyond a reasonable doubt that either party was at fault in the accident. The focus of the City's investigation, however, was to determine who should be issued a citation. As a result, Sgt. Dow, who is certified by the state in accident reconstruction and a state certified accident reconstruction instructor, conducted an investigation. The investigation included talking to all the witnesses involved, to include Ms. Bryant, Mr. Jones, and the initial investigating Officer Rodriguez, as well as taking measurements, conducting vehicle examinations, on-scene examination and signal plan and maintenance examination. Based on all of the evidence, Sgt. Dow found probable cause to issue Mr. Jones a citation. "

"While we respect the District Attorney's decision not to pursue criminal prosecution against either driver in this matter, it does not negate the fact that probable cause existed to issue the ticket to Mr. Jones. "

The police officer who issued the original ticket has resigned as is looking into a possible lawsuit.

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