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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Department of Justice

United States Attorney James R. Dedrick Eastern District of Tennessee


15 INDIVIUALS INDICTED ON A CONSPIRACY CHARGE FOR DISTRIBUTING OXYCODONE PILLS

GREENEVILLE, Tenn - A federal grand jury in Greeneville, Tennessee, returned a one (1) count indictment on March 9, 2010, against Matthew Honeycutt, 41, of Bakersville, N.C.; Lisa Honeycutt, 41, of Bakersville, N.C.; Sammy Atkins, Jr., 24, Newland, N.C.; Whitney Houston, 22, of Newland, N.C.; Jordan Hughes, 22, of Roan Mountain, Tenn.; Stacy Shell, 40, of Roan Mountain, Tenn.; Kenneth Blalock, 21 of Roan Mountain, Tenn.; Stasha Saults-Hicks, 21, of Roan Mountain, Tenn.; Henry Gibbs, 25, of Roan Mountain, Tenn.; Jayne Temple Street, 39, of Bakersville, N.C.; Julia Sellers, 21, of Burnsville, N.C.; Justin Hughes, 19, of Bakersville, N.C.; Phillip Ray, 35, of Roan Mountain, Tenn.; Dawn Cook, 39, of Roan Mountain, Tenn.; and, Misty Turbyfill, 35, of Elk Park, N.C.. The defendants are charged with conspiring to distribute and to possess with the intent to distribute oxycodone pills.

Several defendants, including Matthew and Lisa Honeycutt, Henry Gibbs, Jayne Temple Street, Julia Sellers, Phillip Ray, and Misty Turbyfill, appeared in court on March 17, 2010, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Dennis H. Inman, and entered pleas of not guilty to the charge in the indictment. A trial date has not yet been set.

The indictment alleges that between September of 2008 and March of 2010, the defendants conspired with one another and with other individuals to distribute and to possess with the intent to distribute pills containing oxycodone. If convicted, the defendants faces a term of not more than 20 years in prison, a fine of 1,000,000.00, and a term of supervised release of at least three years.

Watauga County Sheriff Len Hagaman stated, "This is a prime example where partnering with our federal, North Carolina and Tennessee State, and North Carolina and Tennessee local, agencies has proven to be a success in this growing challenge of prescription diversion and 'doctor shopping.' Many man-hours and a great amount of coordination have been put into the successful apprehension of individuals in an attempt to keep these powerful and lucrative pharmaceuticals off of the streets - many of which reach our youth. I commend all of the agencies and officers in this most successful operation."

Rodney G. Benson, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Atlanta Field Division commented on the case, "Addressing the problem of the diversion and abuse of controlled pharmaceuticals continues to be one of DEA's top priorities. The success of this investigation is a direct result of the hard work and dedication put forth by our federal, state and local law enforcement counterparts."

This indictment is the result of an investigation by agents with Watauga County North Carolina Sheriff’s Office, Burnsville North Carolina Police Department, Morristown Tennessee Police Department, Elizabethton Tennessee Police Department, Greeneville Tennessee Police Department, Boone North Carolina Police Department, Burke County North Carolina Sheriff’s Office, Marion North Carolina Police Department, Morganton North Carolina Police Department, Asheville North Carolina Police Department, Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, and DEA. Assistant U.S. Attorney Caryn L. Hebets will represent the United States.

Members of the public are reminded that an indictment constitutes only charges and that every person is presumed innocent until their guilt has been proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

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