Calls for New Hanover County Commissioner Brian Berger to resign are ringing loud and clear after his latest threats to county staff and fellow commissioners and an incident with Gov. Pat McCrory.
In an email sent to Berger Friday morning, Chairman Woody White asked the embattled commissioner to seek help.
"I implore you to gather with your friends and family, and seek treatment," White said. "I will help with that, if asked, for free. But I also ask – implore – that you resign immediately. It is time. It was time for you to do so long ago, but these recent episodes have reached a critical mass."
The email comes a day after Berger climbed on stage with McCrory during the groundbreaking ceremony for the Cape Fear Community College Humanities and Fine Arts Center.
"Read this," Berger said, according to county officials who attended the event, before thrusting a nearly 10-page manifesto into the governor's hand.
McCrory stood on stage with a confused look on his face – his speech in one hand and Berger's manifesto in the other.
The manifesto, which Berger also distributed a few weeks ago in Washington, D.C., threatens some county staff members and falsely accuses both current and former officials of illegal activity. The rambling document spells out Berger's constant drum beat of accusations of corruption and discrimination.
But this time officials are taking notice of Berger's dire predictions.
"I am keenly aware that in the absence of intervention it is possible, if not likely, that its only a matter of time before someone gets seriously wounded or murdered," reads a section of Berger's manifesto.
After McCrory's speech, Berger was standing by the governor's convoy and banging on the windows of the vehicles, according to a member of the security team. The vehicles were empty, but he was yelling and demanding a meeting with McCrory. The security team escorted Berger out and the convoy was given an alternate safe route out of town to avoid any other altercations, officials said.
the tea party is the gift that just keeps on giving. what else has this upstanding local politician been up to?
In early March, county officials really started to notice the escalation in Berger's odd behavior. He made more than 2,000 copies of the manifesto, traveled to Washington and passed them out at the National Association of Commissioners legislative conference. Berger was not attending the conference in an official capacity.
Berger's accusatory remarks toward staff also extends to handwritten notes left on Berger's recently submitted expense reports.
"Continued harassment. Please Stop. Remember the Golden Rule!" reads one note. "No receipt. Discrimination is offensive. Please stop!" another read.
June 2011: Berger campaigned on a platform of fiscal conservatism and small government. But his political ideals were challenged when the StarNews uncovered that he had received unemployment benefits from Washington, D.C., while serving as a commissioner.
September 2011: His then-girlfriend Heather Blaylock obtained a protection order after Berger sent her 144 text messages, including photos of his bloody arm and notes that he was going to commit suicide. The protection order is effective for one year and prohibits Berger from visiting Blaylock's workplace or schools her children attend. At a press conference later that month, the four other county commissioners asked Berger to step down. They said recent attention on Berger's personal problems was a distraction for the county.
December 18, 2012: Berger was arrested for driving while impaired at 2 a.m. His blood-alcohol content was 0.08, above the legal limit in North Carolina, according to a blood sample taken by the Wilmington Police Department the night of the incident.
January 16, 2013: Berger drives to his court appearance, despite having a suspended license. Berger was scheduled to appear in court to face his DWI charge.
he's just a county commissioner so idk if this is really tinderbox worthy but this dude is quite the tea party patriot