North Carolina Deputy Charles Patrick Foreman was fired Tuesday for assuming individuals involved in a shooting were on food stamps.
The Sampson County sheriff’s department responded to a fight Sunday morning at the Lakewood Country Club. Three people were shot by the time deputies were able to get the situation under control with others injured. Foreman responded to a Facebook post about the fight participants not getting their deposit back by noting they were all probably on food stamps anyways.
“It don’t matter, it was paid for on EBT,” the officer wrote on Facebook, according to ABC News.
“The Sheriff’s Office is dependent upon the public trust to be effective in its mission,” Sheriff Jimmy Thorton said in a statement to the local affiliate of CBS News. “The men and women of the Sampson County Sheriff’s Office work too hard to earn the trust and respect of the citizens.”
The Department of Agriculture (USDA) is the main federal agency tasked with overseeing the national food stamp program. It works with state agencies to make sure benefits are properly distributed to qualified individuals and families struggling to feed themselves. The USDA estimates the program has increased from 17 million participants in 2000 to nearly 47 million in 2014.
The improved economy has helped decrease the number of participants in recent years. The Congressional Budget Office found, since participation hit its peak in December 2012, the number of people receiving benefits has declined by more than 1.5 million. States have also begun implementing work requirements which were waived in response to the last recession.
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