United States Attorney Jenny A. Durkan
Western District of Washington
FORMER DRUG COUNSELOR AT RAINIER BEACH HIGH SCHOOL SENTENCED TO TWO YEARS IN PRISON FOR DRUG DISTRIBUTION CONSPIRACY
Sold Oxycodone to Confidential Informant and Others on Multiple Occasions
ROBERT HENRY SMITH, 60, of Seattle, Washington, was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Seattle to two years in prison and three years of supervised release for Conspiracy to Distribute Oxycodone, and four counts of Distribution of Oxycodone, and one count of Possession of Oxycodone with intent to distribute. SMITH was convicted September 22, 2010, following a two and a half day trial. SMITH was employed as a Drug and Alcohol Intervention Specialist at Rainier Beach High School in the Seattle School District. None of the drug sales occurred on Seattle School District Property and none of the drug sales involved students at the school. Testimony at trial revealed that SMITH took calls from drug customers during the school day, and left the school to make drug sales at locations a few blocks away. At sentencing U.S. District Judge Thomas S. Zilly said, “You were selling drugs to make a profit... You were a certified drug and alcohol ... There were kids out there looking up to you.”
SMITH was indicted in December 2009. The investigation involved a series of direct drug transactions in November and December 2009. SMITH made a series of sales of Oxycodone to a person working with law enforcement. SMITH also made sales to other people during the course of the investigation. The testimony revealed SMITH was part of a drug distribution network involving a number of people, with SMITH selling Oxycodone to addicts, and to other drug traffickers who then re-sold the Oxycodone. At trial, one of SMITH’s drug customers testified that SMITH sold $10,000 of Oxycodone pills to another drug distributor. Other customers testified that they purchased oxycodone pills from SMITH in amounts ranging from $50 to $65 per 80 milligram Oxycodone tablet, and received a price reduction for buying in quantities of 50 or 100 tablets.
In the sentencing memo, prosecutors highlighted the scourge of prescription drug abuse. “The epidemic of opiate addiction, and fatalities resulting from opiate consumption, are routinely documented in newspapers, magazines and news reports. The Center for Disease Control now finds that prescription drug overdose for young adults is the leading cause of death from illegal drug consumption, and greater than deaths from car accidents. Inexplicably, while the defendant was employed at Rainier Beach High School as a drug counselor, and arranged intervention and treatment programs for drug-addicted students, he would leave the school campus to sell drugs,” prosecutors wrote in their sentencing memo.
The case was investigated by the Seattle Police Department and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Lisca Borichewski.