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Geneva County man behind bars after making violent threats

Brandon Michael Waddell was taken into custody on a probation violation Thursday night.
Published: Jan. 15, 2021 at 4:56 PM CST
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DOTHAN, Ala. (WTVY) - A series of threats this week led local, state and federal authorities to Geneva County where a Hartford man was arrested on a probation violation. But, as Geneva County Sheriff Tony Helms explains, this violation is just the beginning of problems Brandon Michael Waddell is currently facing.

Waddell was taken into custody by the Geneva County Sheriffs Office Thursday just before midnight. Police recovered a suspicious bomb like device, weapons, and drugs from his home.

“We did find a device that was suspicious,” Sheriff Helms said. “Dothan Bomb Unit did come in and they x-rayed it and they thought it was suspicious and dismantled it there at the scene. It wound up being not necessarily a pipe bomb, but it was a something along the line of an explosive firecracker with some shrapnel wrapped around it.”

28-year-old Waddell is on probation for aggravated stalking in Walton County Florida. This week’s series of events started when law enforcement in Bay County contacted the Geneva County Sheriff’s Office Monday night they had received reports that Waddell was making significant threats to people in their community. He was taken into custody on a probation violation Thursday night.

“The problem of it is persons who [use] methamphetamine, they become very paranoid and they become very delusional and they go without sleep,” Sheriff Helms said. “Their thought process is not like ours and things start coming up and next thing you know they’re making statements to other people about stuff you know isn’t true but you can’t take a chance on.”

Local, state and federal law enforcement worked together on this investigation taking as many precautions as possible.

“It was just a combination of everybody putting their heads together and we were able to take him into custody without any harm to him or to anyone else,” Sheriff Helms said.

Sherriff Helms said this is an ongoing investigation and that more charges for Waddell are likely.

Waddell was by himself in his home when he was taken into custody.

Sheriff Helms said he will be held in the Geneva County Jail and will be extradited back to Florida on the probation violation.

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