FAYETTEVILLE — A Cumberland County jailer sworn to uphold the law is now accused of crossing the line. The jailer is charged with smuggling drugs into the jail.
For four years, jailer Larry Quick used a classroom at the county jail to help inmates get their GEDs. Wednesday the 43-year-old turned himself in to authorities.
Investigators say he brought drugs into the jail and distributed them to inmates.
Sheriff Moose Butler says it came as a shock when a member of his jail staff informed him that Quick was handing out marijuana to inmates.
As a result of their investigation, Quick was charged and fired from his job as a GED instructor in the juvenile block.
Because prisoners do not have a lot of money while in jail, detectives are still searching for a motive.
"I'm sad for him and his family, but he knew better," Butler says. "This is something he's going to have to deal with and of course the courts are going to deal with it also."
Chief Jailer Maj. Dan Ford said when he first heard the news he would have bet his paycheck that it was not true.
"Somehow he went awry," says Ford. "It hurts to see a good man go bad, and that's exactly what happened."
The Fayetteville native was described as a model employee, someone the young inmates looked to as a surrogate father.
"He tried to teach us right now, so when we get out we won't make a worse mistake and be back in here for the rest of our lives," one inmate said.
They say they do not want to be judged and do not want to judge him. They have started a letter-writing campaign to let Quick know the difference he made in their lives.
Ford hopes the letters will help Quick get back on track. "You've got to look at all the good things he's done for us since he's been there," Ford says.
Quick's lawyer tells WRAL his client denies the charges and feels he was wrongly accused.
Some inmates have been drug tested to see just how many of them were involved.
Quick faces felony charges for delivery of a controlled substance in jail and providing the drugs to inmates. He is currently out on a $10,000 bond.