BALTIMORE, Md. (DC News Now) — Maryland State Police suspended one of its Hagerstown-based troopers without pay after an FBI investigation led to federal charges against him.

Cpl. Justin Riggs, who is assigned to the Criminal Enforcement Division Western Region Narcotics, was accused of selling inside information about operations aimed at stopping drug trafficking.

An affidavit filed in U.S. District Court for Baltimore by a member of the Baltimore Police Department said Riggs was in touch with a drug distributor to whom he offered to sell information. In messages between the two, Riggs, among other things, is accused of providing the drug distributor information about:

  • The existence of an ongoing investigation targeting the drug distributor
  • The presence of a tracker that was part of the investigation
  • An aborted attempt by officers to put another tracker on the drug distributor’s vehicle
  • The presence of an informant within the drug trafficking operation

The affidavit includes a breakdown of some of Riggs’ finances, stating that investigators found out that the trooper had five credit cards listed on his Equifax report and that as of December 2022, all five credit cards were at or exceeding their credit. They said Griggs owed more than $34,000 and a minimum monthly payment of $1,385. The affidavit noted that “his debt obligation, excluding his mortgage, vehicle loans, and educational loans exceed $67,000.”

The discussion about finances sets the stage for some of what follows in the affidavit, namely, the business arrangement into which Riggs is accused of trying to enter with the drug distributor.

The investigator with the Baltimore Police Department outlines negotiations in which Riggs supposedly engaged with the drug distributor in an effort to get the distributor to pay Riggs for more detailed information about the operation targeting him. The affidavit includes conversations that took place arranging the amount of money the drug distributor would pay. At one point, the distributor told Riggs that he left $1,800 behind the dumpsters in the rear of the Red Roof Inn Hagerstown-Williamsport, located at 310 E. Potomac St. in Williamsport.

Investigators said they were able to confirm that Riggs picked up the money. The affidavit states that part of the investigation involved a “ruse” in which investigators fed information to Riggs which he then shared with the drug distributor.

Maryland State Police provided this statement to DC News Now:

Corporal Justin Riggs has been employed with the Maryland State Police for 10 years.
He was assigned to the Criminal Enforcement Division Western Region Narcotics.

As a result of his arrest on federal charges, Corporal Riggs has been suspended without
pay. In addition to the criminal investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the
Maryland State Police Internal Affairs Division has initiated an administrative investigation.

Questions regarding the criminal arrest should be directed to the United States Attorney’s
Office. The Maryland State Police are unable to comment on the active and ongoing
administrative investigation.