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Former GOP Lawmaker faces felony charges

Former GOP Lawmaker faces felony charges
Montgomery County Council

In a development that has sent ripples through Virginia's political circles, former GOP lawmaker Matt Fariss has been arrested on serious felony gun and drug charges, along with a misdemeanor for violating a protective order.

Fariss, who had served in the House of Delegates since 2012 before an unsuccessful independent run last year, was taken into custody early Sunday, according to official jail records.

The charges against Fariss include possession of a Schedule I or II drug, a felony, and possession of a Schedule I or II drug while also possessing a firearm, another felony.

These allegations add to the former lawmaker's legal woes, coming just weeks after he was acquitted of felony hit-and-run and malicious wounding charges related to an incident involving his ex-girlfriend.

Lt. Jarrett Rea of the Campbell County Sheriff's Office confirmed the charges but did not provide further details about the arrest or the events leading up to it.

He indicated that more information might be available on Monday.

​The news of Fariss's arrest has prompted a flurry of reactions, with many awaiting further details to understand the full scope of the situation.

The former lawmaker remains in custody, and a court date is set for Monday, though it is not immediately reflected in the state’s online court system.

This arrest raises questions about the intersection of personal conduct and public service, highlighting the scrutiny faced by public figures.

As the story unfolds, the community and Fariss's colleagues are left to grapple with the implications of these charges on the reputation of the office he once held.