N.C. county leaders end contract with EMS service as chief is investigated for racist remarks

Shannon Worrell has been accused of expressing racist and homophobic sentiments at a restaurant


By Leila Merrill

LAKE WACCAMAW, N.C. — The Columbus County commissioners voted Monday night to end its contract with Lake Waccamaw EMS Auxiliary after its chief was accused of making racist and homophobic remarks at a restaurant.

Columbus County commissioners did not give a reason for terminating the agreement, WECT reported. The termination will take effect 90 days after notification.

Shannon Worrell, chief of the Lake Waccamaw Fire and Rescue Auxiliary, has been accused of making racist and homophobic remarks at a San Jose restaurant on July 24. County administrators are investigating the matter, WECT reported.  

Worrell and others had dinner at the restaurant in Whiteville. A disagreement arose over tipping at the table versus a policy to add a gratuity for parties of six or more people.

Security camera footage picked up a negative comment by Worrell about same-sex couples being parents. Other footage was muffled, but restaurant staffers described racist comments made toward staffers including racial slurs.

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