CHRIS BAGLEY

Two men connected to Chris Bagley now face federal guns, drug charges

Neither are charged in his death

CEDAR RAPIDS — Two men with connections to a missing Walker man found buried in southeast Cedar Rapids have been charged in federal court for drugs and firearms but not for his death.

A Linn County Sheriff’s search warrant affidavit shows both men either saw or spoke with Christopher Bagley, 31, in the early hours of Dec. 14, the last day he was seen alive.

Paul Hoff, 40, of Cedar Rapids, is charged in U.S. District Court with two counts of possession of firearms by a felon and one count each of possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.

Documents detail last hours Christopher Bagley was seen alive

CEDAR RAPIDS - Several weeks before the body of a missing Iowa man was found buried in southeast Cedar Rapids, investigators were already convinced the man was dead and possibly murdered.

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Hoff is accused of possessing a .38 caliber revolver and ammunition on Aug. 17 and a 9 mm handgun and a Ruger GP-100 revolver on Feb. 18, according to a complaint. He is also accused of having those guns while distributing drugs.

The complaint includes three of Hoff’s convictions in Linn County court for criminal mischief in 2013 and two charges of first-degree theft, one in 2000 and one in 2013.

Hoff pleaded not guilty earlier this week and his trial is set for May 6.

Logan Gerber, 29, of Marion, was charged last month in U.S. District Court with possession of a firearm by a drug user and possession of an unregistered firearm. Gerber is accused of having methamphetamine and marijuana and a Glock 9 mm handgun on June 9.

He is also accused of possessing a 16-gauge shotgun that isn’t registered to him, according to complaint.

Gerber’s arraignment hasn’t been set.

Neither man has been charged in connection with Bagley’s fatal stabbing.

Bagley left his Walker home about 9 p.m. Dec. 13 with a woman who has not been identified. Bagley’s wife reported him missing on Dec. 17.

His body was found March 1 buried in a yard on Soutter Avenue SE, but authorities haven’t said how that residence is connected to Bagley or his death. An autopsy determined he was stabbed to death.

A warrant request filed in January shows authorities were already convinced Bagley was dead and possibly murdered.

Authorities obtained the warrant to search Hoff’s mobile home, which is the last place Bagley was seen alive. The woman who was with Bagley told authorities they went to Hoff’s mobile home. Bagley and Hoff started talking about possibly robbing someone but never said who, the woman told authorities.

The woman left the home around 4:45 a.m. on Dec. 14, and Bagley stayed, she told authorities.

During an interview with investigators, the woman said Bagley and another man had been involved in robbing people in the past. She said one of the robbery victims may have been Bagley’s marijuana dealer, and she believed the dealer paid someone to harm Bagley because of their history.

In an interview with Hoff on Dec. 22, he admitted Bagley was at his trailer on Dec. 14 with the woman, the warrant shows. He said Bagley and the woman were talking about “hitting” a drug house and “getting a good score.” Hoff said they were vague about where and when, and he decided not to go with them.

Hoff said Bagley left between 7 and 7:30 a.m. He didn’t know who Bagley left with or what vehicle he got into when leaving, according to the warrant.

Gerber, during an interview with investigators, said Bagley called him about 3:32 a.m. Dec. 14, saying he was on his way to Hoff’s and told him to be ready because he was going to need his help for the “Grande Finale,” the warrant shows. Gerber said he didn’t know what that meant but he thought Bagley was planning to rob someone.

In the warrant, authorities said Bagley was a “known drug user” who used marijuana and methamphetamine. They also had information that Bagley may have been selling marijuana and “was known to carry a gun.”

During the investigation, authorities learned of threats allegedly made against Bagley, stating, “it is believed Bagley is deceased and possibly murdered,” according to the warrant.

Additionally, another acquaintance made threats about cutting out Bagley’s tongue to keep him quiet, authorities said. That person thought Bagley faced possible federal prosecution related to illegal weapons and drug charges.

No charges had been filed at the time of Bagley’s death.

• Comments: (319) 398-8318; trish.mehaffey@thegazette.com

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