Ex-officer charged in prison drug case

Christopher R. Flippo is accused of trying to smuggle drugs to an inmate.

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WALLA WALLA -- A local man working as a Washington State Penitentiary correctional officer last spring is facing criminal charges for allegedly intending to smuggle marijuana to a prisoner.

Christopher R. Flippo, 25, of 1835 Amelia St., is suspected of having the controlled substance in his vehicle in the parking lot of the institution May 2.

Officials reportedly found the pot behind the front passenger seat in the seat compartment, in addition to $200 in the driver's door compartment.

Flippo -- who has since resigned his position -- told a prison investigator that day he had intended to take the marijuana into the institution, according to a police report filed in court. Flippo also allegedly told police he had been giving tobacco and marijuana to an inmate since about October of last year.

"Flippo said he received $500 for introduction of tobacco and $800 for introduction of marijuana," the police report says. "He said the money is sent to him from a female in Maryland. Once he receives the money he makes the drops."

The $200 in the car reportedly was left over from $800 he received.

Flippo allegedly told police that when he delivered the marijuana, he would walk to his car during a break, put the substance in his pocket and walk back into the prison where he would give it to the inmate or put it in the inmate's cell.

Flippo was charged in Walla Walla County Superior Court earlier this month with possessing the controlled substance with intent to deliver it, possessing it in a correctional institution and second-degree attempted introduction of contraband.

He has not been arrested, but is being summoned to court Nov. 7 for his first appearance.

U-B reporter Andy Porter contributed to this report. Terry McConn can be reached at terrymcconn@wwub.com or 526-8319.

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