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Arrest warrant issued for council candidate

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Tarrick Pittman

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BY AMELIA HARPER
Staff Writer

Thursday, July 18, 2019

A candidate for the Rocky Mount City Council is facing an order for arrest in Edgecombe County but says he is dealing with the issue.

Tarrick Pittman, 45, has been cited for failure to appear for an April 15 court date on a charge of operating a motor vehicle while his license was revoked and for an expired registration plate on a 2006 BMW driven on March 5, according to a copy of an arrest warrant obtained from the Rocky Mount Judicial Center on Wednesday by the Telegram.

This is not the first time Pittman has faced charges in Edgecombe County related to driving without a license. In 2002, he also was cited for driving while his license was revoked. That charge was dropped in 2010 when it still had not been resolved in court and had aged out of the system.

In addition to these two cases, Pittman was charged five times in Nash County for driving with his license revoked in the time period between 1997 and 2003. In 2009, he also was charged with driving without a license. Since 1997, he also has been cited twice for speeding and twice for driving without insurance.

Other charges include unauthorized use of a motor vehicle in 2000 and failure to secure a passenger under the age of 1 in 2002.

The disposition of these nine separate cases in Nash County is unknown.

Pittman acknowledged that his driving record is problematic.

“I have always had issues with my driving and I take full responsibility for that. I have made some mistakes,” Pittman told the Telegram. “I haven’t always been a good driver, but I am a responsible person.”

Pittman said he was unaware of the order for arrest against him that was issued in April.

“I took care of that today,” Pittman said in an interview on Wednesday evening, too late for his claim to be verified. “This whole issue will be resolved by the time of the election.”

In addition to the motor vehicle charges, Pittman’s court record shows two charges for communicating threats.

The first of these charges was filed in 2014. Pittman said it resulted from an argument that took place in his store when someone was threatening an employee. That charge was dismissed and most of the files regarding the charge have been purged.

“I was in a situation where I felt that I needed to protect the people in my store. I would probably handle that situation differently today,” Pittman said.

The other incident, for which Pittman was issued a misdemeanor criminal summons on March 19, 2005, was filed by Jerome Earl, who claimed that Pittman said in a telephone conversation, “Me and a couple of my hood friends will come over and (expletive) you up for sending the police to my business.”

Pittman pleaded not guilty in this case and it also was dismissed.

“That was a case of mistaken identity,” Pittman said. “I don’t know who was on that call, but I was not even in the store that day. That is why the case was dismissed.”

Pittman cautioned political opponents who would use these issues against him.

“I don’t care what mud they sling at me,” Pittman said. “I just want to talk about the issues and get into office so I can fight for the people. I am not going anywhere.”

Pittman is running against Councilman Andre Knight to represent Ward 1 on the City Council. So far, he is Knight’s only opponent.

Candidates still can file for election until noon on Friday.

Staff Writer Lindell John Kay contributed to this report.