Garry McFadden is a unique man. He served as a CMPD detective for 34 years and had a 90% rate for solving the 700 murder cases he was assigned.. His most famous case was the Wallace serial killer murders in 1995. He was known for his unique approach to solving murders… developing a rapport with suspects by meeting at diners…and also for his tailored suits. Garry has his own TV show named “I am Homicide.”
- Garry, talk about your childhood. Where did you grow up.? What are your favorite childhood memories?I grew up in rural and I mean rural Elliott, SC (population 237). Most of my childhood and teen years were spent traveling back and forth to Sumter, SC. where I was born and where my parents lived. I visited Elliott SC often because that’s where all of my friends in addition to my grandparents and my great grandmother lived (she lived to the ripe old age of 101).The majority of my summers were spent working in tobacco fields and peach orchards with my friends; I didn’t want to work with my father and his brothers who were in the construction business.
My father built every home that we lived in and fortunately enough the last home that he built (his masterpiece) was willed to me. There was no public transportation when I was growing up and as a result we rode and built our own bikes. My friends and I made summer money by picking up soda bottles and reselling them to the store for three-five cents per bottle. One weekend we were on a mission and we made $32.00. We spent the entire payout at the same store. To this day I don’t believe that our bottles were worth that much, I believe that Mr. Frank Scurry rewarded us because of our honest effort in making money.
- You’ve lived in Charlotte since 1978. What drew you here?
In 1972 I visited Charlotte with my Lynchburg, SC Boy Scout Troop 152. We came to Charlotte to attend an NWA wrestling event hosted by Jim Crocket Promotions. For whatever reason our Boy Scout group was denied entry to the Charlotte Coliseum. So we took the opportunity and toured the city. Later on that same year I met Rick Flair (he was known as the “Nature Boy” at the time) in Sumter, SC at Riley Baseball Park after a wrestling match. He talked about Charlotte and I decided it would be a good place to live.
- Do you have a bucket list? If so what is on it?
Live on the streets of Charlotte (as a homeless person) with the homeless for a week while secretly providing for them each day.
Fly Fish for a Month out WestBuild an Out Door Kitchen which would hold all of my grills & my XL Big Green Egg
Have one Glass of Beer at every Micro-Brewery in Charlotte
.Reunite with two of my best female friends, Joyce Morris and Karen Welch who were the first non- African Americans that attended my middle / high school in the 70’s. I’d like to hear their story about the experience of being the minority during that time.
- If there was a genie in a bottle who popped out and said he would immediately grant you three wishes, what would they be?
- For Heaven to have a phone or an Facebook account
- That everyone spoke the same Language
- Create a Community with Restaurants where I could live with all of my best childhood friends forever… My other friends could come for short visits.
- I have been told you played an integral part after the Keith Lamont killing as a CMPD police officer. Would you share what that was?
The second night of the protests and riots I just walked through the streets of Charlotte dressed in a suit talking to whomever would listen. I then challenged them to do more. I met two men in front of the police department who were accompanied by 50- 70 protesters in the process of taking down the American flag which hung in front of the department. I approached them and we argued for two hours, however, we made an agreement to get together later to discuss the protest and our concerns. After about ten more conversations, Greg Jackson and Antwan Smith created an after school program called “Heal Charlotte”. I also met a man by the name of Braxton Winston on the third night of the protest; we had an hour conversation. After challenging each other for about an hour I told him he might as well be “swept up with the broke glass” because he wasn’t going accomplish anything by shouting and his aggressive protesting. He is now a city councilman at Large Braxton Winston.
- You have announced you are running for sheriff.There was a 27% rise in homicides in 2017. As sheriff how would you coordinate with the Police Chief Kerr Putney to develop new initiatives to abate those numbers. What would they be?
I am a running for Mecklenburg County Sheriff because I believe that I can make a difference. I am passionate about my city, county, community and every citizen regardless of level and status. I believe the passion I have for the community and law enforcement, has become obvious due to my involvement and my continued advocacy for both the Community and Law Enforcement. My involvement in community engagement efforts at both the local and national level offered me the opportunity to partner with other agencies in dismantling ineffective organizational designs, while creating more diverse environments, an experience that I believe will be key in creating and maintaining a successful partnership within the community, schools and the sheriff’s department.
My 33 year law enforcement experience (20 years as a homicide detective) enlightened me on what I believe is the key ingredient in creating a successful community partnership with the sheriff department. I plan to achieve this goal by personally and physically becoming part of the communities, sponsoring events that involve the active participation of both the community and law enforcement.
The city, the county, the community and law enforcement must work together by respecting the individual, respecting the community, accepting and respecting the fact that social factors are key in influencing and reducing the homicide rate.
And finally…. a very important question….do you support 287b?
(as you know the 287g program is one of ICE’s top voluntary partnership initiatives that permits state or law enforcement entities to sign a Memorandum of Understanding to be delegated authority for immigration enforcement within their jurisdictions. In Mecklenburg County participation in 287g remains at the sole discretion of the Mecklenburg County Sheriff.)
I DO NOT support 287b
Would you explain why you don’t you support 287g?
(Several attempts by me to ascertain his answer to this question remain futile)
A few of Garry’s awards:
2017 President’s Award Charlotte Branch of NAACP
2017 Elevation Community Achievement Award,
Beauty After the Bars Foundation
2017 Martin Luther King Growing the Dream Award- Grass Roots Community Initiative 2015
Recognized by President Obama – 21 Century Policing Initiativ
2015 Citizen of Year- Harvey B Gantt Award for Community Engagement and Service
2015 National Hook-Up of Black Woman- Community Service Award
2015 Charlotte Magazine Recognized for the Cops & Barbers Community initiative
2011 Chief of Police Outstanding Service Award
2011 MoM-O (Mothers of Murder Offspring) Community Service Award
2011 Victim Service Award of Distinction by Victim Services of Homicide Families
2011 Federal Bureau Investigation Distinguish Service for Homicide Investigations
2011 Detective of the Year, Optimist International /Queen City Optimist Club
2010 Law Enforcement Commendation Medal, The National Society of the Sons of the American
2004 NAACP- Charlotte-Mecklenburg Branch Ashanti Award- Unsung Hero- Community Service Award
1997 Federal Bureau Investigation Distinguish Service for Homicide Investigations
1996 Medal of Valor, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department
Charlotte Observer, Community Relation Recognition