TWO FELONY CHARGES: Alleged drug dealer appears in court

COLUMBIA CITY — A man who allegedly sold drugs in South Whitley had his first appearance in court Monday and pleaded not guilty.Frank O. Hibbs, 60, of Liberty Mills, was arrested July 31 for two counts of dealing a Schedule II controlled substance.Case reports state Hibbs allegedly made two drug deals in July, on the 2nd and the 31st. Both times, he sold to a confidential informant working for the Whitley County Drug Task Force.The informant allegedly bought 40 pills of hydrocodone July 2 for $200 in South Whitley. A similar purchase was made July 31.Another individual was arrested with Hibbs. Billy L. Sroufe, 53, was charged with maintaining a common nuisance. Case reports indicate that Sroufe did not participate in either drug deal, but was the driver of the vehicle for Hibbs.When questioned by investigators, Hibbs admitted he needed the money and made the sales. He said Sroufe knew about it, but took none of the money from the transactions.Sroufe denied all knowledge when questioned by investigators.To read the rest of this story, see the Aug. 9 issue of The Post and Mail. Don't have a subscription? Call (260) 244-5153 or subscribe to our e-edition. For breaking news, sports updates and additional coverage, bookmark the homepage and find us on facebook and twitter.