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A former North Carolina police chief accused of faking his suicide to avoid prosecution was found and arrested in South Carolina

By Jamiel Lynch, Tina Burnside and Taliah Miller, CNN

An Ex-North Carolina police chief accused of faking his suicide was found and arrested in Horry County, South Carolina, the agency said on Facebook.

Former Chadbourn Police Chief William Anthony Spivey was located near Loris, South Carolina, near the North Carolina border, on February 24, according to the Facebook post.

Spivey was relieved of duty due to misconduct allegations last spring. At the time, he faced over 70 felony charges, including evidence mishandling, drug trafficking and embezzling, the Horry County Police Department said in the post.

Spivey has been in custody for three days and has no attorney listed, according to Columbus County jail logs.

Spivey was reported missing in Columbus County, North Carolina, on February 21 after he failed to return from a fishing trip on the Lumber River, according to the Horry County Facebook post.

Investigators located Spivey’s boat abandoned in the river along with his vehicle at the boat landing, the Columbus County Sheriff’s Office said in a release.

The investigators spoke to Spivey’s friends and family at the scene, the Columbus County Sheriff’s Office said in a Facebook post, and “family members described the incident as a possible suicide.” Along with the boat, the investigators collected handwritten letters and a .22-caliber rifle with a discharged round still inside, according to the post.

“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 said.

After three days of searching and collecting video from surveillance systems and conducting interviews, it became even more apparent that the suicide scene was staged, investigators said.

Warrants for Spivey’s arrest were issued due to his failure to report to court on February 23, the release said.

Investigators were able to track Spivey to an apartment complex in Loris, where he was taken into custody.

Spivey has 40 outstanding warrants for failure to appear, each having a bond of $25,000, for a total bond of $1 million dollars, according to the Columbus County Sheriff’s Office.

Two other individuals were arrested as part of the “pseudocide” investigation, the Columbus County Sheriff’s Office said. Debbie Bridgers Sasser and Harold Dean Sasser were both charged with obstructing justice for allegedly assisting the staged suicide.

It is unknown if the Sassers have attorneys.

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CNN’s Amir Vera contributed to this report.

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