Drug Dealer Gets Caught In His Own Trap
“The cop’s like, ‘If you help me out, I’ll help you out. You can make good money at doing this.’ I could go work for 10 minutes for them and make 300-400 bucks real quick.”
Terry Warpoole had found a way to easy money …as a drug dealer and an informant. He’d drifted a long way from what he found at a Christian youth rally when he was 12.
“I just felt this love of Christ and I’d felt this love that I’d never felt before. I can recall that being the very first day that I ever asked Christ to come into my life. It really changed me at that age.”
That love was in stark contrast to what he often felt at home.
“Well, my dad: he was a provider, not a father, I could say. When I was a kid, he didn’t ever spend time with me. When it would be punishment time, sometimes he hit me too hard. I completely hated him. Even as much as I had wanted to hate him, I was still looking for his approval. I didn’t feel like I was worth a lot in his eyes. When he would tell me that he loved me, I didn’t know if he meant it.”
So Terry’s enthusiasm for God began to fade. “You tried to be the guy at school, you wanted everybody to like. Other people in school wasn’t really into Jesus. I had multiple girlfriends and so one thing led to another and Christ just kept getting further and further away.”
Then other things started taking over. “When I got into my high school years I was smoking pot, drinking and just trying to fit in. If they were doing something, I was going to try to do it too. I was looking for acceptance in what I thought was cool.”
School was hard for Terry, and at 16, he dropped out and took a couple of part-time jobs. He says he felt like he had no purpose until a guy at the local gym introduced him to entertainment wrestling.
“I found out I was good at it; like I was really good at it. And that really changed my life. I mean, I went from doing some stupid things in life to focusing on wrestling. God still was not in the picture. But I had something to focus on.”
With hopes of making it into the WWE, Terry wrestled all over the country; he loved feeling valued. Then his dreams came to an end when he broke his wrist in the ring.
“I didn’t feel like I had a purpose like I did, because I wasn’t able to be booked for the shows. I wasn’t able to lift anymore, so I was able to have too much free time on my hands.”
Again without a direction, Terry moved to a college town known to be party central. “And that’s when I really heavily started doing different drugs: ecstasy, all the prescription pills, and I did heroin, cocaine…”
He also started dealing drugs. Then eventually he married, and he and his wife had a daughter. He hoped having a family would bring stability and meaning to his life. But his wife was as deep into drugs as he was, and cheated on him often.
“I was always worried about what she was doing. What was around the next corner, you know. I didn’t know who she was with or what guy she was with tonight.”
Still Terry loved his daughter, and wanted better for her. He asked his parents to raise her. He knew what it would take to change himself; he just wasn’t willing.
“I didn’t want to give up certain things in my life to get out of it. Really would just take a full commitment to Christ, but I didn’t want to do that.”
What he did want was fast, easy cash. So he found another source of income…. as a snitch.
“He said, ‘all you got to do is you help me out, give me some information, do some buys for me, and we’ll pay you.’ And I did that all over. For the FBI, the Narcotics Sheriff’s office, I did that all over; working as an informant, but I was still doing my dirt. They would pay me really good.”
After a while, he got cocky and cooked up a scheme to increase his take.
“I knew these guys that had a real big connection with a cartel. I made this whole story up about how I knew somebody who wanted to buy 2 ½ kilos. My plan was, I’m going to set these guys up. I’m going to steal a kilo from them. Bust these guys with a kilo and a half. They arrested all of us. They let me go and here I am sitting on top of a whole kilo of cocaine and I just got paid big time from the cops.”
Terry started selling it and was making tens of thousands of dollars. A friend of his was one of the buyers. “I guess one day he left my house and got pulled over. They found the dope on him. The choice was ‘Look, I’ll get you out of this trouble, but you’re going to have to roll over on somebody.’”
Before long, the tables turned.
“He come to my house, he had a little button on his shirt right here; it was a camera. All the money he gave me was photocopied. He bought the dope from me, left the house, I walk out the back door, had a whole string of police coming in my yard.”
After Terry surrendered to the police, he finally surrendered to God.
“I’m tired of this. I’m tired of it. I said ‘I thank You that Your Son Jesus died on that cross for me. I thank You that He died for all my sins. I thank You that I can be righteous again.’ And I said, ‘Lord, I ask You to come back into my heart and forgive me of my sins.’ And then from then on out, I just started seeking God. I woke up praying, I went to bed praying, reading the Bible, reading different books. Oh man, it changed my life drastically over the next few months in jail.”
Terry was released on bond, and soon divorced his wife. Eventually he married Allison, a Christian. After two years, his case came to trial.
“I was facing three counts of trafficking cocaine. That’s 12 years in prison. Mandatory 12 years. But something inside of me told me I was going to be okay.”
That feeling was right. Due to a change in state law, Terry received only a 14-month, suspended sentence. Terry gives credit to God, and says He’s been changing him ever since.
“The Lord started molding me and shaping me and causing me to become a man; to give me responsibilities. He gave me the heart and desire to be responsible as a man.”
Then Terry got something he had wanted his entire life – it came from his dad.
“He come up to me, hugged me and told me that he loved me and he was proud of me for all the changes that I made. I’d never had his approval my whole life. I had his approval finally in my life. It took me till I was 30 some years old.”
Terry eventually went back to wrestling – he uses it to share the Gospel.
With the family life he’s always wanted, and a firm grasp on truth, Terry is well able to encourage others.
“Freedom with Christ. Knowing that there’s no condemnation, know that they’re worthy. They don’t have to live the life that they’re living now. That when they give it to Jesus, He’ll come in and make you a new person.”