Five stations in all have been subpoenaed so far
Attorney General Roy Cooper has issued subpoenas to three more North Carolina gas stations in an investigation into price gouging allegations, bringing the total number of subpoenas issued so far to five.
One station receiving a subpoena requesting information is located in Winston-Salem, while another is in Smithfield and the third is in Stokesdale. Consumer reports indicate that the stations supposedly charged them $3.99 or more per gallon.
"A supply crunch shouldn't be an excuse to rip off people who need gas," Cooper said. "We're following up on consumers' reports and taking action to investigate possible price gouging."
Two subpoenas were issued on Monday to a station and a gas wholesaler in Guildford County. It is likely that more subpoenas will be issued later this week.
Recipients are required by the subpoenas to respond to the price gouging allegations and provide the North Carolina Attorney General's Office with documentation, such as information on how much the stations were charged by their gas suppliers.
As of late afternoon on September 20, the North Carolina Attorney General's Office had received around 1,145 reports of potential price gouging throughout North Carolina since September 16. Thirty-eight of these came from the Asheville area; 45 from the Charlotte area; 40 from the Greenville area; 279 from the Triad; 184 from the Triangle; and 19 from the Wilmington area.
"Reports from consumers on the ground are vital to enforcing the law against price gouging, so let us know if you see excessive gas prices," Cooper said. "Most businesses do right by their customers, but unfortunately some bad apples may take advantage of a crisis to gouge people. If our investigation uncovers violations, my office won't hesitate to take legal action."
Update: Attorney General Cooper has subpoenaed two additional gas stations, one in Raleigh and one in Indian Trail, bringing the total to seven.