A former police chief from North Carolina was arrested several days after he faked his own death. Last spring, William Anthony Spivey, 36, was charged with 70 felonies following a wide-ranging investigation into his conduct while he was a member of the Chadbourn Police Department.
Spivey was dismissed as chief after the investigation accused him of mishandling evidence, trafficking illegal drugs, and embezzling money. He was charged in June with dozens of crimes and was arrested again in January for allegedly stealing catalytic converters from an auto repair shop.
Spivey was reported missing on February 21 after he failed to return home from a fishing trip. Investigators found Spivey’s truck and an abandoned boat that belonged to him along the Lumber River in Columbus County. They discovered several letters and a .22 caliber rifle with a discharged round still in the gun. Family members told investigators that Spivey likely committed suicide, but officials said the evidence at the scene appeared staged.
“All evidence was collected by Crime Scene Investigators and processed. Investigators quickly concluded that the evidence collected did not support a suicide scenario,” the Columbus County Sheriff’s Office wrote on Facebook.
“Meanwhile, Criminal Investigators were conducting a separate investigation. As investigators collected video from surveillance systems and conducted interviews, it became even more apparent that the scene on the river was staged,” the post continued.
Officials eventually located Spivey hiding in an apartment in South Carolina. As officers moved to arrest him, he fled into the woods, where he was eventually captured. Authorities also arrested two other people who are accused of helping him fake his own death.
Spivey is being held on a $1 million bond and could face additional charges.