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CROCKETT COUNTY, Tenn. — A former Mid-South Sheriff deputy is accused of providing protection while on the job for drug deals.

Calvin Fields, formerly of the Crockett County Sheriff’s Department, is facing a list of federal drug trafficking and gun violations charges.

If you talk to those who know the 24-year-old before his federal indictment, they would tell you he had a bright future with a promising career in law enforcement.

On Wednesday his former boss, Crockett County Sheriff Troy Klyce, weighed in.

“I can’t tell you how much we bragged on him all the way through the last couple years. Never met a more polite, nicer young man,” said Klyce.

Klyce said Fields had been with the department for two years and currently worked on patrol. He said in his time with the department he had never been written up. Klyce said those in his small department are in disbelief Fields is accused of providing security for a drug deal. Klyce said he has no clue what went wrong.

“I think I still do, think the world of him. I just have mixed emotions about it,” he said.

Klyce said he first received information Fields might be involved in drug activity in January.

The FBI then got involved.

According to a federal complaint, the agency began working with a known gang member and an unidentified source. The gang member agreed to work with agents to have some of his pending charges reduced. The gang member told agents of several occasions when Fields would provide security, by following him to different locations in a marked Sheriff’s vehicle. While the cocaine was dropped off, Fields was there to make sure nothing went wrong.

Fields would make anywhere from $100 to $800 for helping.

On February 13, FBI agents staged a fake drug drop.

According to agents, they listened and watched as their informant and Fields began coordinating security for the drop. The informant went to the Highway 20 Motel off Highway 412. At the same time, agents said they saw deputy Fields sitting in the median of the highway in a marked squad car.

The informant was bugged. After the drop, agents said they listened to the source call Fields. Fields instructed the informant to drive a little way up the road to Gas USA, where Fields was paid $400.

At the gas station they listened as Fields asked the informant, “Say, everything went good up there?”

The informant said, “Well, I appreciate you having my back sir.”

Agents said Fields responded, “Oh yeah. I got you.”

Fields was arrested February 17 on a federal complaint. The federal grand jury in Jackson, Tennessee returned an indictment on February 21.

On Wednesday, no one answered at multiple addresses listed for Fields throughout Crockett County, but his former neighbors were disturbed by the news.

“We thought he was a really nice guy. Ya know? A good kid. He had a good life ahead of him. He was doing good,” said one neighbor.

Fields was fired for insubordination and conduct unbecoming of an officer. If convicted he faces up to five years to life in prison, a $1.25 million fine, or both.

Fields has a detention hearing Thursday at 11 a.m.