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Bail recovery agent faces drug charges

July 07, 2009|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. -- A bail recovery agent is accused of selling cocaine twice to a police informant, according to Berkeley County Magistrate Court records and West Virginia State Police.

Christopher Lee Haddix, 25, of 154 Pacific Blvd., Hedgesville, W.Va., was arraigned Tuesday on two felony counts of possession and delivery of a controlled substance by Magistrate JoAnn Overington, according to court records.

Haddix was released from custody after bail was posted for a $100,000 bond set by Overington, according to court records.

State Police 1st Sgt. E.D. Burnett said in a news release that the investigation would be turned over to a federal prosecutor because the alleged dealer was armed with a handgun when about 1 gram of cocaine was sold for $70 to the informant on June 28 in the parking lot of Food Lion near Hedgesville, according to court records and Burnett's press release.

The informant told police that the alleged dealer was wearing a pistol in a holster on his side during the deal, according to the release.

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The second drug deal, worth $90, happened at the Shell gas station along W.Va. 9 near Stribling Road on Monday, according to court records.

Troopers later recovered a "fugitive recovery agent" badge from the 2007 Jeep Cherokee that Burnett said was used in the drug deals, as well as an additional gram of powder cocaine.

A search of Haddix's residence led to the discovery of a .40-caliber pistol and two long rifles, Burnett said.

The Jeep, valued at approximately $18,000, was seized by police Monday night when Haddix was arrested, Burnett said.

West Virginia State Police Troopers C.S. Maynard, Sgt. E.D. Widmeyer and Trooper C.A. Ellwanger were assisted by members of the Eastern Panhandle Drug & Violent Crime Task Force and State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigations.

Tommy Weatherholtz Jr., owner of Weathholtz Bonding LLC, said Haddix was hired as an independent contractor last month to provide fugitive recovery services, informally known as bounty hunting, after Haddix cleared a background check and was authorized to do the work by the state police in Charleston, W.Va.

Haddix was no longer employed by Weatherholtz on Tuesday, Weatherholtz said.

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