A former Brunswick County police chief has pleaded guilty to willfully failing to discharge his duties as chief by letting his son—a convicted felon—fire a submachine gun at a law enforcement firing range in 2011.
Emmett Ballree, who served as police chief in the city of Boiling Spring Lakes from 2008 until 2011, pleaded guilty to the Class 1 misdemeanor today in Brunswick County District Court, according to Assistant District Attorney Chris Thomas.
District Judge Jerry Jolly sentenced Emmett Ballree to a 45-day suspended sentence and 18 months of unsupervised probation.
Jolly also ordered that Emmett Ballree surrender his law enforcement certification, Thomas said.
Initially Emmett Ballree and his son, Michael Emmett Ballree, were both charged with possession of a firearm by a felon. Emmett Ballree’s firearm by a felon charge was prompted by aiding and abetting his son, Thomas said.
Michael Emmett Ballree was convicted of that charge in 2013. Michael Emmett Ballree was arrested on heroin charges in Wilmington in March. (Read story)
Thomas said several law enforcement officers reported that Ballree brought his son to the Brunswick County law enforcement firing range, where he let him fire a fully automatic, silent submachine gun in front of officers.