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  • Writer's pictureJefferson Weaver

Detective Denies Affair, Says Jacobs Abused Confidence

• Investigator Samantha Hickman was set to testify Monday in the removal hearing for Jody Greene.

Samantha Hickman on Monday denied having an affair with Sheriff Jody Greene, but said a pastor and co-worker -- who is also a former sheriff’s candidate -- is working with the Democrat challenger to take down Greene.

Since she was denied the chance to testify, Hickman on Monday publicly described being betrayed by Victor Jacobs as a pastor and friend for political purposes.

“Since it was necessary to try this case in the media and destroy my name,” Hickman said in a social media post, “without knowing the truth, I want to set the record straight.”

Hickman was subpoenaed to testify in Columbus County Superior Court Monday during the hearing to have Greene removed from office. Greene resigned as the hearing was about to begin. He came under scrutiny in September after his Democrat challenger for the sheriff’s post, Jason Soles, released a secret recording made in 2019 where Greene uses racial epithets and vulgar language, and refers to minority employees as “black bastards.”

Greene was suspended Oct. 5, pending an investigation into allegations of maladministration, civil rights violations, corruption and failure to discharge duties. He is still on the November ballot.

District Attorney Jon David filed an amendment Friday to the Oct. 4 petition for removal. In the amendment, former Deputy Victor Jacobs submitted an affidavit that he had secretly recorded conversations with Hickman where she discussed the alleged affair in detail. Jacobs also said that Hickman had asked him to drive her to Wilmington for an abortion.

Hickman said Jacobs was not telling the truth in his affidavit.

“At the end of 2019 I was in a relationship with a male,” she said in the statement, “the only male I had ever had any romantic relationship with. I realized I was pregnant after ending this relationship.” Hickman did not identify the male, except to say he was not Greene.

Hickman said she considered Jacobs not just a co-worker, “but my best friend.” Hickman said she went to Jacobs, who is an ordained minister, seeking spiritual guidance. At the time, Jacobs was pastor of a local church as well as a coworker.

“Having been in a relationship with my partner of 10 years I was scared she would find out and not be able to forgive me. I did the unthinkable. I aborted that pregnancy.”

“I did not come to this decision on my own,” she said. “I confided in my ‘best friend’, Victor Victor advice to me was ‘to get rid of it’. (He) told me that my girlfriend would be unable to forgive me and I would not be able to afford the child on my own.”

Hickman said she alone made the decision to have an abortion.

“When it comes down to it, I made that decision myself but unbeknownst to me these confidential conversations with Pastor Victor Jacobs were recorded three years ago with the purpose of using me to take down Sheriff Jody Greene.

“These conversations were not about Sheriff Greene and I assure you I never said they were!”

Hickman said that while she was working with Jacobs, she “became aware” that Jacobs was having an extramarital affair, and would allegedly drive his county patrol vehicle to meet the woman. That relationship lasted for around two years, Hickman said. Jacobs showed Hickman explicit pictures and text messages from the woman, Hickman said, and tried to seduce Hickman at one point.

“Victor also attempted to pursue me during the course of our friendship,” she wrote. “He went as far as showing me a picture of his penis. I declined and told him I loved him as a brother.”

“I never once judged Victor or told anyone his private business until now.”

Jacobs left the CCSO in 2021 to take a position with the Pender Sheriff’s Office.

Hickman served under Soles when he was a captain under Sheriff Lewis Hatcher. She said she heard him use a racial epithet to describe the former sheriff during Hurricane Matthew.

Detectives were instructed to stay at the sheriff’s office during the storm, Hickman said. When Hatcher ordered Soles to go home, Hickman said he became upset. Soles accidentally took a county fuel card home with him, Hickman said, and she and another detective went to get the card.

“We walked around talking to Jason as he was filling up his generators,” Hickman said, “On the porch, Jason was talking about Sheriff Hatcher sending him home.

Jason said F--- that N-----, after everything I’ve done for him.

“I find it extremely hard to believe he started recording Sheriff Greene because he was offended by what was being said. Not when he has said much worse himself.”

Hickman said she was shocked but knew about Jacobs’ recorded conversations “for three years,” because people called her and described hearing the recordings.

“I just couldn’t figure out why he would record me,” Hickman said. “Now I know he did because I was saying something he thought he could turn and use against Sheriff Greene in hopes he or Jason could take his place.”

She said Jacobs told her he was directed to make the recordings.

“I have messaged Victor and asked why he would record me, not understanding what my private conversations had to do with anything. Victor told me someone told him to but would not tell me who.”

Hickman was scheduled to testify Monday. As Superior Court Judge Doug Sasser, Greene’s attorney Michael Mills and District Attorney Jon David were discussing Greene’s resignation, Hickman’s attorney, Harold “Butch” Pope, asked the court if she would be able to take the stand.

Hickman said that since she was denied the opportunity to testify, she decided to take her story public.

“I have been used by people I thought cared about me, and for what? Political gain? This has all been planned out for the better part of three years,” she said. “Now my personal life is being attacked by the District Attorney’s Office at the word of Victor Jacobs and Jason Soles. Did anyone question their integrity?”

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