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DA's Office Employee Suspended Over 32-Year-Old Warrant

An employee of the District Attorney’s Office of Burke, Caldwell and Catawba counties has been suspended without pay following an unserved Felony Larceny warrant from 32 years ago, according to a statement released Thursday by District Attorney David Learner.

Learner said that he believes the charges against Bobbly Lee Powell, 75, arose during the time that the employee separated from his first wife. Powell has been instructed by the DA’s Office to voluntarily turn himself in to be served the warrant. 

Powell has been employed part-time with the DA’s Office since January 2015, assisting investigators in locating crime victims and witnesses. 

According to Learner, three former district attorneys and a former sheriff knew nothing of the warrant. 

“The warrant has been dormant for more than three decades, even though Mr. Powell has lived in Catawba and Burke counties all of his life and could be readily located,” Learner said. 

Learner called the warrant a “clear political ploy” and said he questions its timing. According to Learner, Catawba County Sheriff Coy Reid called Powell personally and demanded he turn himself in.