Politics & Government

North Carolina candidate for Congress faces stalking charges

Japheth “Jeff” Matemu
Japheth “Jeff” Matemu CCBI

A U.S. House candidate was arrested and charged with stalking his wife, according to police records.

Japheth “Jeff” Matemu, the Libertarian Party candidate in the 2nd Congressional District, was charged with misdemeanor stalking and cyberstalking on June 26 after an incident that occurred at his wife’s home in Holly Springs on June 17. He was arrested on July 18.

Matemu and his wife were married in 2005 and have one minor child. They do not live together now and have been in a custody battle. His wife filed for a protective order against Matemu in May, but it was denied, according to Wake County court documents.

Republican Rep. George Holding currently represents the 2nd District, which includes all or parts of Wake, Franklin, Harnett, Johnston, Nash and Wilson counties. Democratic challenger Linda Coleman is also running in the November election.

Matemu, 45, is an immigration attorney with offices in North Carolina and New York, according to his website. Matemu is authorized only to practice immigration law in North Carolina. Matemu, is originally from Kenya, is a member of the Supreme Court bar, according to his website and several news accounts.

In February of 2017, he was reprimanded by the North Carolina State Bar. Matemu requested a restraining order against the State Bar in March to stop it “from publishing in any form a reprimand,” but withdrew his request days later.

Matemu, who lives in Fuquay-Varina, has raised more than $8,800 for his campaign, though much of that is in the form of a $4,700 loan from himself to the campaign, according to campaign finance reports. His campaign has spent more than $7,500.

WRAL previously reported Matemu’s arrest.

Messages left with Matemu, the Libertarian Party of Wake County and the state Libertarian Party were not returned.

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Brian Murphy: 202.383.6089; Twitter: @MurphinDC