Edgecombe County – A Picture of the D.A.’s Office


What comes to mind when you see this picture? Some of the names may have changed however the racial makeup of the picture has not.

Sources in the white and the black community say the retiring D.A. Howard S. Boney Jr. has basically allowed the Nash and Wilson Counties  D.A. offices to do whatever they want to and did not question their work. During the time of the James Johnson/Brittney Willis case in Wilson when the NAACP and some local black folks met with Boney about some things that happened in the D.A. office, Boney said he was unaware of what the D.A.s had done. So obviously my sources are right on target.

I have not talked to any of the candidates who are seeking the D.A. appointment however I have talked to several folks who have talked to some of the candidates. The only names I have seen the papers are Attorney Antonio Lawrence (black), Keith Werner Assist. D.A. (white) and Attorney Joe Ivey former assist. D.A. (White).

I received a phone call from a friend in Raleigh NC a couple of days ago asking me were we supporting Attorney Anthony (Tony) Brown (black)? I told them I was unaware he was seeking the appointment.

Attorney Mark Bibbs (black) has been on a local radio station in Rocky Mount twice this week discussing the D.A. appointment. Sources say he is a candidate as well however I didn’t hear him say it on the Express Yourself Monday night talk show and I didn’t hear all of the conversation on the Joy in the Morning Wednesday talk show.

Sources say that Boney told Ivey a couple of weeks ago that he was retiring. Sources say Ivey has said he was going to do the right thing and bring about some changes within the the D.A. office. Ivey worked as an Assist. D.A. under Frank Brown who resigned to become a Judge. He also worked under Boney for a while but then went back to private practice. Sources say he seems to be the candidate to appoint.

Sources say Werner who is already in the D.A. office will not be a good choice. Sources say things will stay the same.

Sources in the white community and the black community say Assist.  D.A. Steve Graham would be the one however he is not interested in the position. There was atleast another name out there a white female who some say would be a good candidate as well.

There has been much conversation in the black community about Attorney Antonio Lawrence. Some has been concerned about Lawrence being sick and when I asked the question, I was told that he has been given a clean bill of health. A white resource said that Lawrence record on the internet looked good and they said they thought he would be a good candidate. Sources say he is getting some good feedback from the black community and he is receiving much support from black elected officials.  Sources say despite the health rumors he is ready and willing to take on this responsibility.

I understand the interview process has began a few days ago and so it appears that there may be an appointed D.A. by May 1.

I am very much concerned about the racial makeup of the D.A. office. However I am more concerned about how none of the black attorneys have brought up the racial makeup of the D.A. office to the Democratic Party, the NAACP nor have I heard anything on the streets. This needs to be addressed however we also need to look at other areas. But the people who work on the inside need to bring about the awareness since they are on the inside and knows better than those on the outside.

Now that I am fully aware of the racial make up of the D.A.’s, I will hope that this will be an ongoing accountability process.

I recognize and understand that the Governor has a job to do and “we” some in the black community have made it clear where we stand on the appointment however keeping in mind we know the real deal will come at election time where the voters have the control.

Although I would love to see a black person as the next D.A., I will also support a D.A. not of color who will do the right thing. I feel if the D.A. is not of color, he or she will understand what they need to do because “we” some in the black community has spoken.

The numbers in the 7th Judicial District shows that black folks make up around 60% of the voting population within the Democratic Party so if there is a strong black candidate who would like to be the next D.A. during the 2010 elections, then they could possibly become the first black D.A. this east of Hwy 95.

Updated: April 25, 2009 14:37

See related:

Edgecombe County – District Attorney Appointment At A Glance

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13 thoughts on “Edgecombe County – A Picture of the D.A.’s Office

  1. When i said forced too, I was talking about the NAACP and others demanding or calling for a black DA.

    (I know exactly what you were talking about.)

    And I know you will give who ever hell when you think that it is deserved. I’ll give you that. I have met Joe Ivey once, but have seen him in action and he does a good job.

    (I don’t question that, however I don’t question anyone given a chance to do good job until they prove otherwise.)

    I have talked to people as well, and heard that he is tough but fair.

    (I don’t question that however I can’t question what some others will do who are not currently there like Werner.)

    I think that he will make the Asst. DA’s work for a change.

    (I don’t doubt that however I do not know what changes he will make nor anyone else until they are there.)

    And in your words Steve Graham, oh hell no. Nothing will change if it stays in house, except for a female Asst. DA.

    (I have no idea what he will do either.)

    I won’t mention her because I don’t know if she is interested, If she was, I would go her way over Ivey.

    (I understand that Graham is not interested and the lady you do not want to mention is probably the one that I heard would be good.

    I don’t know the black Assist. D.A. however I bet she will do a great job also.)

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  2. When i said forced too, I was talking about the NAACP and others demanding or calling for a black DA. And I know you will give who ever hell when you think that it is deserved. I’ll give you that. I have met Joe Ivey once, but have seen him in action and he does a good job. I have talked to people as well, and heard that he is tough but fair. I think that he will make the Asst. DA’s work for a change. And in your words Steve Graham, oh hell no. Nothing will change if it stays in house, except for a female Asst. DA. I won’t mention her because I don’t know if she is interested, If she was, I would go her way over Ivey.

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  3. Oh yeah, I am not just an employee, I work very closely with this perspn and pretty much know all of their dealings. I also know most of the black elected officials in the area, some better than others. And I know you, so I may be at a slight advantage. Never had any real problems with you, sometimes you go a little too far for me, but oh well. I use a code name, well because while it is politically correct for some to comment, you know that I will be considered a racist and such. I would not damage my career or put the person I work for in that position. I don’t think I say anything out of the way, but sometimes people take offense when we disagree. I think we can disagree, but still be respectfull.

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    • Oh yeah, I am not just an employee, I work very closely with this perspn and pretty much know all of their dealings.

      (Okay again that is fine. Not going to debate that because I don’t know who you are.)

      I also know most of the black elected officials in the area, some better than others. And I know you, so I may be at a slight advantage.

      (You should know me because I am using my real name.)

      Never had any real problems with you, sometimes you go a little too far for me, but oh well.

      (Really?)

      I use a code name, well because while it is politically correct for some to comment, you know that I will be considered a racist and such.

      (I have no problem with that and if I did I would not allow folks to post here anonymous. So therefore unless a comment is just real ignant, I approve it.)

      I would not damage my career or put the person I work for in that position.

      (I have no problem with that and that is understandable.)

      I don’t think I say anything out of the way, but sometimes people take offense when we disagree. I think we can disagree, but still be respectfull.

      (I agree with this. I be respectful too although you say I go a little too far for you. Well that is agitation. Get it? The Political Agitator a name that was given to me.)

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  4. I know who you are talking about, and agree about him backing out. My position is it does more damage to concentrate on a persons race than the issues. I work for a high ranking black official and not once has that ever been made an issue. That is what truly unites people and gains the respect of all. And no that person is not a safe negro. I want a person that is appointed on merit not race. I have and will vote for black candidates based on there effectiveness and morals. That is what it should be about.

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    • What? I be damn. You stated “he” in your first comment so damn I know you know who the person is.

      First of all how ignant for you to assume that “we” and all folks who are concerned that we are concentrating on a persons race than issues. Anyone that knows me, know that when it comes to politics that I am hard as hell on black folks so I ain’t the one.

      Who gives a damn who you work for? Since you are hiding behind a code name you could be lying about who you work for. High ranking official? Do they tell you everything? I don’t think they would tell you about their personal politics unless they had a need to. I don’t know of anyone who would talk to their employees about such an issue and if they did they have some serious issues because employer and employee relationships about politics is not normal.

      “That is what truly unites people and gains respect of all?” What in the hell are your talking about?

      Oh hell yeah he is a safe Negro and there are plenty more black elected officials who fit that description also. They all know me and they know I be straight up with them because I let them know where I stand when it comes to them politically.

      Merit and not race? Well I be damn. People vote for folks who look like them the majority of the time and that is a fact. People vote according to how much money is spreaded within the black community many times and I know as fact the elections that were bought because of certain black folks got paid to help whites get elected. I have been at the table and can name these blacks. You can also look at the PAC reports also.

      Well I be damn voting for black candidates based on their effectiveness and morals. Hell that is what an educated politically inclined voter does as well.

      So since their has only been one black person’s name in the paper are you saying this person is not effective and has a moral issue?

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      • I know that he has never been effective as a defense attorney. There are two black attorneys that I would vote for before Werner. We need new people in the DA’s office, that is no secret. But if you demand a black DA, you may be able to reelect them with all of the black vote, but you would lose all the white vote. That does no one any good. I personally favor Joe Ivey. Yes people more often do vote for who they look like, but this area does cross over. There are many black elected people in this area that gets huge amounts of white votes. But they never felt like they were forced to and that is why they continued to get elected.

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      • I know that he has never been effective as a defense attorney.

        (Really?)

        We need new people in the DA’s office, that is no secret.

        (I am glad we agree on this one.)

        But if you demand a black DA, you may be able to reelect them with all of the black vote, but you would lose all the white vote.

        (Really? Lose all of the white vote? Oh hell no just like a black candidate will not get all of the black vote.

        That does no one any good.

        (Oh but all white D.A.’s is a good thing? Oh please get real.)

        I personally favor Joe Ivey.

        (That is your personal opinion and that is fine. However other folks have personal opinions as well. I bet you there is a reason for that and it is personal as well. You see I don’t know Ivey so I don’t dislike him however I know politics.)

        Yes people more often do vote for who they look like, but this area does cross over.

        (What? Cross over due to particulars. It is according to what black folks are deeply rooted in a particular race. It used to be certain black folks who were the driving forces during elections but there are other black folks who are getting deeply involved so things are a little bit different. Not there yet but getting there.)

        There are many black elected people in this area that gets huge amounts of white votes.

        (Correct I follow elections and have been since the early 90’s so I know the numbers.)

        But they never felt like they were forced to and that is why they continued to get elected.

        (You have lost me on this one and I ain’t going to try to figure it out. I know the numbers but to say I have touched basis with the majority of the voters in a particular race to find out why they voted for someone would be ridiculous as hell.

        Forced to? I do know some folks who have voted for folks because of a slate and being influenced by others, have stated if they new what they new after the election they would have voted differently. You see in this area most folks attempt to educate folks on election day with slates of names on a fixed ballot.

        The majority of the black folks who continue to get elected have little to no opposition and that goes for the 3 counties. I am an active Negro when it comes to politics so you can’t snow me on local politics. You see I have always weighed the whole picture when it comes to politics and do not allow black, brown and/or other folks to make decisions for me.)

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  5. Maybe he just did not want to support someone just because they are black, maybe he wanted to come together and unite as the human race instead of divide and conquer, and finally destroy. Just a thought.

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    • I know all the black elected officials well so I know how they think and just about feel strong how they vote. So I ain’t the one to tell your ignance to. I will challenge any of them as it relates to politics.

      Support someone just because he is black. Oh hell here we go. This person didn’t have a problem during the appointment of the Register of Deeds appointment nor during the election. However they did divide and conquer by putting their name on the ballot and then dropped out. It was a strong possibility that the black person would have defeated the incumbent but this person got enough votes to knock the other black person out.

      Come together and unite as the human race? It will take more than the damn District Attorney appointment and election.

      Destroy? Oh hell how ignant.

      Just FACTS!!

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  6. I understand that a black elected official refused signed a petition/lettter supporting a black DA. This town official represents a predominantly black ward and has sold his soul. Money seems to destroy some people. We sell ourselves and community for a pat on the back a crumb from the table. Guess what we have the nerve to try and lead others from the pulpit when we don’t know who we are and feel that we owe the master because we were sharecroppers.

    Do you know that the good minister and councilman does not know what freedom is and feels he must defend the actions of the master. Why can’t he just concentrate on trying to be a minister and learn how. He is offering excuses why we shouldn’t ask. Poor modern day slave does not know how far behind he is.

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