FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (WNCN) – Cumberland County Sheriff Earl “Moose” Butler has disciplined five deputies following a professional standards investigation arising from the events at the Crown Coliseum in Fayetteville at the Donald Trump for president rally on March 9, the department said in a statement.
Three deputies were demoted in rank, and they were suspended for a period of five days each without pay for unsatisfactory performance and failing to discharge the duties and policies of the Office of Sheriff, the department said in a news release.
Two other deputies were suspended for a period of three days without pay for unsatisfactory performance and the failure to discharge their duties.
The rally drew thousands of Trump supporter but was marred by an incident in which Rakeem Jones was punched by John McGraw, 78, of Linden as Jones left.
All five of the deputies have been reprimanded and placed in a probationary status for the next 12 months, and admonished not to fail to act and directed to comply with the requirements of Sheriff’s Office policies concerning proper response to apparent criminal activity.
“The actions of the deputies and their failures to act in situations such as that which occurred during the Trump rally at the Crown Coliseum have never been and will not ever be tolerated under the policies of this office,” Butler said in a statement.
“We regret that any of the circumstances at the Trump rally occurred, and we regret that we have had to investigate all of these matters. It is our duty and responsibility to do justice, and to carefully examine not only the actions of others, but our own actions to ensure that the law and our policies are justly and fairly enforced,” Butler said.