New Hanover County Commissioner Brian Berger--who was charged with a DWI in February--is likely looking at a four-month prison sentence. Following Berger’s arrest in Avery County this week for violating his parole, and possessing numerous weapons and drug paraphernalia, the commissioner made an appearance in court this afternoon—via video from the county jail.
New Hanover County Commissioner Brian Berger will spend the next year under supervised probation—or, failing that, 120 days in prison. This morning, Berger pleaded guilty to December charges, including his second DWI, and a first for drug possession. While he will have to do community service and undergo formal drug and substance abuse evaluation, Berger can no longer legally be removed from his seat on the county commission.
Throughout recent legal battles concerning New Hanover County Commissioner Brian Berger’s fitness for public office, mental health has been a central topic. At a news conference last week, Commission Chairman Woody White said the commission had heard nothing from Berger regarding whether he needed or had received mental health counseling. White cited Berger’s incoherent emails, conspiracy fixations and erratic behavior as grave concerns that responsible leaders could not ignore.
It wasn’t until the addition of Sarah Palin to the Republican Presidential ticket in 2008 that Rhonda Amoroso’s desire to create political change in the Cape Fear region re-ignited.
Several years later, the New Hanover County Republican Party re-elected Rhonda Amoroso to a second two-year term as Party Chair. Then, almost immediately, Governor Pat McCrory appointed her to the State Board of Elections.
According to state statute, Amoroso will have to step down from her County position, and the local GOP will select a new Chair.
Listen here for the exchange between White and Berger.
Embattled New Hanover County Commissioner Brian Berger is likely on his way out.
Chairman Woody White called for Berger’s resignation last month after a series of actions over the last several weeks by Berger that alarmed the Board – including the public accosting of Governor Pat McCrory during a ceremony at Cape Fear Community College.
The Board voted last night to censure Berger and to file an amotion. Just before the vote, Commissioner Thomas Wolfe castigated Berger for refusing to step down.
" I think the best you could do is resign. You’ve brought shame and dishonor upon this council. And I'm mad about it and I don't want to put up with it anymore."
Brian Berger interrupted, saying, "We're going to have to disagree on that, and..."
Thomas Wolfe fired back.
"Well, of course we are. You can't see where you've done anything wrong. You think you're a white knight on a shining horse. Well, I got news for you Mr. Berger. You're not. You're a disgrace. Do the community the right thing. Stand up like a man and resign."
At a news conference Friday afternoon, New Hanover County Commission Chair Woody White called for Brian Berger’s resignation. The call came after a series of recent incidents that have heightened concerns about the safety of county staffers and what some are calling Berger’s deteriorating mental condition.