SBI: New Bern woman impersonated ALE agent at Kinston ABC store

NEW BERN, N.C (WNCT) — A New Bern woman pretended to be an ALE agent and tried to view permits and conduct an inspection at an Alcoholic Beverage Control store in Kinston, according to the State Bureau of Investigation.

North Carolina Alcohol Law Enforcement special agents arrested Ritha Michelle Hazlett, 34, Wednesday and charged her with impersonating an officer.

ALE special agents worked with the Lenoir County ABC employees to identify Hazlett.

The SBI alleges she entered the ABC store on 110 Heritage Street in  Kinston and told the ABC store manager she was with ALE and requested to view the ABC permits assigned to that location.

“ABC stores do not have permits issued to them,” said ALE Special Agent in Charge Eric Swain,” and this raised suspicion.”

Hazlett reportedly later spoke to the Lenoir County ABC general manager by telephone where she again identified herself as an ALE agent assigned to the New Bern Office. She stated she was a new employee to explain why no one knew her.

ALE special agents obtained an arrest warrant for Hazlett, who turned herself into the Craven County Magistrate’s Office, where she was released on a $500 secured bond.

ALE Special agents are North Carolina law enforcement officers and impersonating an officer is a  misdemeanor.


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