PIKE COUNTY, Ky. (WSAZ) -- A Pike County Sheriff's Office dispatcher who is also a deputy is facing charges after an undercover drug investigation.
According to a press release, Matthew Blanton, 33, of Pikeville, and Bradley Childers, 34, of Pikeville, were charged with first degree trafficking in a controlled substance.
Blanton is a dispatcher for the Pike County Sheriff's Office. He is also sworn in as a deputy on the department.
Operation UNITE Law Enforcement Director Paul Hays says a UNITE detective was working in Marrowbone Wednesday afternoon with a confidential witness and they bought Oxycodone from Childers.
They say Blanton, who was not on duty at the time, was with Childers during the sale.
Hays says Childers became suspicious and asked Blanton to use his resources to identify the undercover detective. Investigators also say Blanton also helped Childers learn the identity of the confidential witness.
"Later that night Mr. Childers contacted our witness and threatened his life," Hays added.
UNITE detectives were made aware of the threat and began an investigation with Pikeville Police and Kentucky State Police.
Childers and Blanton were both arrested early Thursday morning.
"We take threats against individuals involved with our investigations very seriously," Hays said. "We are also very concerned when a law enforcement officer is implicated in any illegal activity."
"The cooperation provided by Sheriff Keesee, and those officers who worked throughout the night to bring this investigation to a successful conclusion, are to be commended," Hays said.
After the arrest, Sheriff Charles Keesee says Blanton had been, "Placed on leave of absence without pay and suspended of all duties with the Pike County Sheriff's Office until UNITE completes their investigation."