An employee of the N.C. Department of Correction’s Wilkes Correctional Center in North Wilkesboro is in custody on federal charges of possessing firearms while being a convicted felon, selling firearms to a known convicted felon and “making materially false official statements.”

The charges against Michael Todd Holloway, 57, of North Wilkesboro, are in a criminal complaint filed Thursday in U.S. District Court in Charlotte. Federal authorities arrested Holloway that day and he had an initial appearance Friday before U.S. Magistrate Judge David S. Cayer in Charlotte.

Cayer appointed an attorney for Holloway and ordered that he remain in custody in the Mecklenburg County Jail pending a detention hearing Wednesday in Charlotte before him.

Holloway admitted during an Aug. 28 interview with investigators that around March 2019, he sold four guns to a man he knew was a convicted felon because the man was an inmate where Holloway worked after being convicted of armed robbery, stated an affidavit by U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Agent David M. Schauble. The affidavit was made in support of the charges filed against Holloway and his arrest.

The affidavit identified the man who bought the firearms from Holloway as “Mr. Horton.” It said Holloway believed “Mr. Horton” was a member of the Bloods gang and that Horton contacted Holloway via Facebook with a “friend” request in March 2019.

The four guns are identified in the affidavit as a Zastava 7.62-x-39mm rifle (AK-type rifle), Smith and Wesson .40-caliber pistol, Anderson .223-caliber rifle (AR15-type rifle) and a Canik 9mm pistol.

The affidavit stated, “On or about March 18, 2019, Mr. Horton and another person robbed two other drug traffickers of approximately 910 grams of methamphetamine. During the robbery, Horton fired a warning shot into the air. Then, on April 8, 2019, Horton, with two other drug traffickers, again robbed the victim of the March 18 robbery, this time for approximately 455 grams of methamphetamine. Again, Mr. Horton was armed.”

The affidavit said Horton identified Holloway as the source of an AR-15 rifle and an AR-10 rifle Horton sold to Ari Williams of Brevard and an SKS rifle he sold to an unidentified man. It also said Horton identified Holloway as the source of a .40-caliber pistol he used during the April 8 robbery of two drug traffickers.

The affidavit said that on Oct. 3, Holloway told investigators he had stopped selling firearms after speaking with them on Aug. 28 and that he had taken all of his guns off an online sales platform he used. Those statements were false and Holloway admitted selling one or more firearms to another person he admitted should not be purchasing firearms, the affidavit stated.

All of the firearms cited in the affidavit were manufactured outside North Carolina and thus involved interstate commerce.

The affidavit said Holloway was convicted of driving while impaired in 1996, first-degree trespassing and assault and battery in 1988, assault with deadly weapon with intent to kill in 1980 and breaking and entering and larceny in 1979. Several of these are felonies

Holloway was hired as a correctional officer at the Wilkes Correctional Center in 2005, and was promoted to food service officer at the same facility in June 2012, said John Bull, communications officer with the N.C. Department of Public Safety. Holloway remains an employee of the N.C. Department of Correction with an annual salary of $38,399, said Bull.

He added, “The N.C. Department of Public Safety has zero tolerance for any staff involvement in any illegal activity, and the department is cooperating fully with law enforcement and conducting its own review of the matter. Any staff who participates in illegal activity will be subjected to appropriate personnel action, including dismissal.”

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