LYONS — A corrections officer at the Wayne County Jail faces felony charges after allegedly selling drugs to inmates.

Seth M. Welch, 26, of Newark, was charged Thursday by the sheriff’s office with felony charges of first-degree promoting prison contraband and second-degree receiving reward for official misconduct.

Welch also was charged with misdemeanor counts of second-degree promoting prison contraband, official misconduct, and fourth-degree criminal sale of marijuana.

In a press release, Sheriff Barry Virts said Welch was arrested following an investigation at the jail, where he is accused of supplying inmates with illicit drugs while on duty. He was arrested at the jail, where he was arraigned and released on his own recognizance.

Welch will initially appear on the charges in Lyons Town Court, although his case will eventually wind up in county court due to the felony charges. Virts said the investigation is ongoing and more charges are pending.

Virts said he immediately suspended Welch pending the outcome of the investigation. The sheriff, who declined to comment further, added that an internal investigation is also pending.

“Other than the press release, there will be no further press comments regarding Welch’s arrest until the internal investigation is complete and an Article 31 hearing in done,” Virts said in an email to the Times. “I hope to do the hearing Tuesday.”

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