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County deputy resigns after charges

May 03, 2002|BY SARAH MULLIN

martinsburg@herald-mail.com

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - An 11-year veteran of the Berkeley County Sheriff's Department who was charged with failure to arrest in March has resigned from the department, Sheriff Randy Smith said Thursday.

Cpl. Dennis Messick, 43, of Martinsburg, resigned on Wednesday, Smith said.

An administrative hearing within the department was held and a decision regarding discipline was made, but Smith disagreed with the decision and appealed it.

Smith declined to comment on the decision made during the administrative hearing.

Messick resigned before the appeal was heard by the civil service commission, which administers various issues within law enforcement agencies.

The charge stems from allegations that Messick was seen at a night club on March 15 and 16 with Diane Marcy, 47, of Martinsburg, who was wanted for failing to appear before Circuit Judge David Sanders on Feb. 11 for a sentencing hearing, according to police and court documents.

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A warrant had been issued for her arrest on Feb. 21 stemming from felony forgery and uttering charges from July of 2000, according to Circuit Court documents.

Messick and Marcy were allegedly seen at Ollie's, a nightclub in Berkeley County, according to police reports.

The police report said that on Feb. 26 Chief Deputy K.M. Lemaster, Lt. C.R. Henry Keller and Lt. D.E. Streets told Messick about the warrant issued for Marcy.

He was warned to have no personal contact with her until the matter was resolved by her surrendering herself or by lawful arrest, according to police reports.

Marcy turned herself in to the Sheriff's Department on March 18, and proceeded to tell investigating officer Lt. K.C. Bohrer she had been with Messick at the nightclub on March 15 and 16, according to police reports.

Messick also told Bohrer he had been with Marcy on those dates at the club, and he did not attempt to arrest or notify any other officer about her presence or warrant status, police reports said.

A conviction on a charge of failure to arrest is punishable by a maximum six months in jail and a fine of up to $500.

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