Former N.C. Police Chief Found and Arrested After Allegedly Faking Suicide to Evade Criminal Charges

"Investigators quickly concluded that the evidence collected did not support a suicide scenario," said authorities in a statement

William Anthony Spivey
Photo: Horry County Police Department

The former head of the North Carolina–based Chadbourn Police Department was arrested after allegedly faking his own suicide in an effort to avoid criminal charges.

According to the Horry County Police Department, 36-year-old Anthony Spivey was arrested on Thursday near Loris, S.C.

Spivey's arrest comes after he was relieved of duty last year following an investigation over misconduct that was led by the North Carolina State Bureau, the HCPD announced on Facebook.

"He was ultimately faced with over 70 felony charges, including evidence mishandling, drug trafficking, and embezzling," said the HCPD.

Police received a tip Wednesday night that helped them locate Spivey. The suspect was at an apartment near Loris and tried to flee from police into the woods before being taken into custody.

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Columbus County, N.C., jail records do not list an attorney for Spivey who can speak on his behalf.

The HCPD reported that Spivey initially was reported missing on Feb. 21 after he never returned from a fishing trip on the Lumber River in Columbus County.

"That absence led to an extensive water search by multiple local and state agencies," added the HCPD.

When authorities started to search along the river they spoke to family members at the scene who described the incident as a potential suicide, said the Columbus County Sheriff's Office in a statement.

"Family members described the incident as a possible suicide. Handwritten letters were collected at the scene, along with the boat, that also contained a .22 caliber rifle with a discharged round still in the rifle," added the CCSO.

"Investigators quickly concluded that the evidence collected did not support a suicide scenario."

For three days, the search for Spivey continued with the help of rescue crews and several agencies until he was finally located and arrested.

Currently, Spivey has 40 outstanding warrants for failure to appear and each warrant has a bond of $25,000 for a total bond of $1 million, said the CCSO.

Two others, Debbie Bridgers Sasser and Harold Dean Sasser, are facing obstructing justice charges for helping assist with the fake suicide attempt, CNN reported.

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