A former Transportation Security Administration officer accused of being a drug dealer on the side pleaded guilty, as charged, Thursday morning to multiple counts of criminal sale and possession of a controlled substance.
Last month’s arrest of Todd Stoddard, 29, of Cheektowaga, was spurred by a tip that he was selling cocaine near a Town of Tonawanda bar, according to Erie County District Attorney Frank A. Sedita III.
During the course of the investigation, Stoddard sold powder cocaine to an undercover sheriff’s deputy in the parking lot of that Sheridan Drive bar, the district attorney said.
Stoddard was taken into custody June 6, after the sheriff’s deputies obtained search warrants for him and his vehicle, and he was pulled over in the Town of Tonawanda. At that time, he had powder cocaine individually packaged for sale, digital scales and other paraphernalia in his possession.
Authorities said they didn’t find evidence that Stoddard’s actions involved his job as a federal security officer at Buffalo Niagara International Airport, where he had worked from November 2011 until June, when he resigned.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Mary Beth DePasquale, who is assigned to Sedita’s Tactical Prosecution Unit. Stoddard faces a maximum sentence of up to 18 years in prison when he’s sentenced Oct. 24 by Supreme Court Justice John L. Michalski.