Publisher's note: If anyone finds fault with the veracity of this series of articles by former Chief Deputy Harry Meredith, we implore you to please take issue with what Mr. Meredith considers to be true right here on BCN, either by comment or by posted article, and you will receive all the space that is reasonable to refute these allegations.
These articles from Chief Deputy Harry Meredith, Ret. are an intent to express what he believes to be true, and if, once again, there are those that object, you have full access to Beaufort County NOW as your "First Amendment Pulications /platform. The entirety of these ongoing posts can be found archived here.
I just read Ernie's letter detailing his six accomplishments in seven years, and I am relieved to see he is still alive and living in Beaufort County. The letter is almost the same one he sent out four years ago from his river front house extolling his accomplishments.
He has been missing from public events the last four months since my articles appeared in Beaufort County Now detailing how he put his hand on the Bible, swore an oath to God to tell the truth and then lied to a federal Judge several times.
If you want to see what kind of Christian and God-fearing man he is, read my other articles about how he inappropriately touches his married female staff in front of witnesses and demeans them verbally in front of witnesses.
I am not going to rehash my articles here so I can address his gaslighting letter
he sends out occasionally.
After retiring from the Highway Patrol, Ernie says he served as a reserve deputy with the Beaufort County Sheriff's Office for eight months, and I think that is correct. What Ernie fails to mention is how and why he left. After Ernie made numerous requests, his closest friend, Alan Jordan, refused to make Ernie a Captain in the Sheriff's Office. Alan knew Ernie did not have a skill set that would add anything positive to the agency so he made a hard decision against his friend. Well, that infuriated Ernie.
He went home, grabbed his gear, put it in a cardboard box, drove back to the Sheriff's Office and threw the box at the back door. Alan does not have children so I told him when he gives bad news to a child, he has to offer a juice box to soften the blow and reduce the tantrum. This is just one example of how immature Ernie is when he does not get his way and how he cares for county property.
He also touts his tenure at the Community College as the Interim Chief. He left there rather suddenly as the complaints from minorities and females started surfacing. When he had problems while with the Highway Patrol, he disappeared. In laymen's terms, as Ernie would say, he got transferred out of sight.
He disappeared from the Sheriff's Office, and he disappeared from the Community College. The same pattern returns now. His transgressions in the Office are now public, and he has disappeared again. He may be a Republican, but he reminds me of Bunker Biden.
I judge a man by his deeds rather than his words. Ernie can say he has Christian Conservative Values all he wants, but I question his values if he is willing to lie to advance his cause after swearing an oath to God to tell the truth. Don't blame me as his blind followers do; blame Ernie for doing it.
He states in his letter he has accomplished six things in seven years. The first one deals with riot gear. I was laughing so hard when I read that I had to take a break and clean my glasses.
First, if he can find fifty deputies to work for him, he says he can outfit them with riot gear and be ready for deployment in an hour.
So, we, the taxpayers, have 50 special flame-resistant riot suits, 50 riot helmets, 50 riot batons, 50 pairs of riot gloves, 50 sets of shoulder protectors, 50 pairs of elbow protectors, 50 pairs of thigh protectors, 50 pairs of knee protectors, 50 pairs of shin protectors and 50 pairs of steel toed riot boots. I am tired of typing this incomplete list of gear, and I am sure you are tired of paying for it.
How often do deputies with a year or two of experience spend training for riots? Could expensive training time be better spent on topics deputies encounter day to day?
Ernie's budget has almost doubled since he took Office in 2015. I wonder why?
Does anyone remember Joan (Jo Ann) Little from the 1970's? This murder trial was probably the most publicized incident in the recent history of Beaufort County. There were protests, but I do not remember any riots.
Has there been a riot in Beaufort County in the last 50 years that required 50 armed and heavily protected deputies? Ernie is creative when it comes to wasting the taxpayers' money because not many leaders would have thought to waste money this way.
If you are unlucky enough to see Ernie, ask him if he stores that riot gear in the storage facility on American Legion Drive. I understand the county has rented the entire facility for Ernie. He also keeps most of the cars he purchased there because he does not have any deputies to drive them. Out of sight, out of mind.
Ernie claims in the letter he has put more deputies on patrol to protect you. From what I can tell from his records, he has the same number of deputies assigned to patrol as Jordan did in the late 1990's.
Ernie claims he received funding for a narcotics dog. He fails to mention there has been a narcotics dog at the Sheriff's Office off and on for the last twenty years.
Around the clock Patrol coverage in the county began in the late 1990's. Ernie did not start this.
What Ernie fails to do in his letter is answer the questions regarding his failed leadership and his unethical behavior. For those of you still defending him, ask why he has not addressed these issues. Ernie actually believes his decisions and transgressions are inviolate. That is the very definition of a dangerous man blinded by his imaginary position of supreme power.
Ernie has, and will, tell you he is the most powerful man in the county. The hubris this man with a gun displays should concern the average person.
I will congratulate Ernie for improving the 911 Center by instituting Emergency Medical Dispatch Training for the Communicators. Alan Jordan tried to accomplish this but did not have four commissioner votes as Ernie does.
Fairness is a virtue. I will have to admit Ernie has accomplished one thing in seven years.
Do not let Ernie continue to gaslight you
. He does not have a lot to show for seven years in Office unless the numerous lawsuits costing hundreds of thousands if not millions of dollars count as accomplishments. If so, I will agree he is the most accomplished Sheriff in county history because he is
facing more lawsuits based on his poor decisions than any Sheriff in Beaufort County in the last sixty plus years.
This will be Ernie's legacy.
Harry W. Meredith, Jr.