ONLY ON 3: Community Action head sparked latest Berger investigation
WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — It’s been one week since New Hanover County Commissioner Brian Berger attended a public meeting at his ex-girlfriend workplace. Berger’s actions led to his arrest for violating a protective order his ex Heather Blaylock filed. Tonight we finally know who first raised concerns about Berger being there.
We found an e-mail with a letter attached sent by Community Action’s Executive Director Cynthia Brown. In the documents sent to Community Action’s attorney and several others, Brown says she asked a sheriff’s deputy at last week’s meeting if it was appropriate for Berger to be there. Brown wrote that she questioned Berger’s presence because she was aware of the protective order against the commissioner filed by Blaylock, who works at the agency.
In a phone conversation Monday, Brown said she acted according to personnel rules. She said she was aware of Berger’s restraining order because Blaylock had provide Community Action with a copy of it.
Brown stressed several times during that her actions were not politically or personally motivated as some have implied.
In the e-mail and letter sent out last week Brown wrote, “My overarching concern is workplace safety for the staff, children and parents given the history of this individual and his relationship with our employee.”
We reached out to Berger’s colleagues on the County Commission. Many declined to comment. Chairman Jonathan Barfield briefly addressed Berger’s latest arrest saying, “It is what it is.” He also said that the commission has already expressed its thoughts and concerns about Berger in the past. Back in September the board made it clear that they feel Berger should resign as commissioner.
Since last week’s arrest Berger has said that he was just doing his job as a county commissioner by attending the meeting and had no idea that’s where Blaylock worked.
We reached out to Commissioner Berger as well today, but have not heard back. His next court date is scheduled for January.
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