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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Columbia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, January 12, 2023

Indictment Charges Eight Members of Alleged D.C. Drug Gang With Conspiracy

Defendants Arrested for Allegedly Peddling Cocaine, Heroin, Fentanyl , and PCP

            WASHINGTON – An indictment was unsealed today charging eight individuals in a drug conspiracy.  Agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), and officers with the Metropolitan Police and Prince George’s County Police Departments arrested seven of the defendants yesterday. 

            Melvin Grayson, 49, of District Heights, MD, Christopher Wells, 44, of Oxon Hill, MD, Jimmy Davis a/k/a “Fatz,” 41, of Bowie, MD, Terrell Washington a/k/a “Turk,” 43, of Hyattsville, MD, Kenneth Watts, 55, of Upper Marlboro, MD, James Kinard a/k/a/ “Fat Rat,” 45, of Temple Hills, MD, Charles Cunningham, 56, of the District of Columbia, made an initial appearance today in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. The defendants are each charged with conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine, 100 grams of more of heroin, 40 grams or more of fentanyl, and one kilogram or more of phencyclidine. Tyrone Ragland a/k/a “Tech,” 54, of the District of Columbia, is also charged.

            During the arrests and related search warrants on multiple residences, law enforcement recovered at least 8 firearms (including a ghost gun and shotgun), ammunition, drugs (including fake pills containing fentanyl, crack cocaine, powder cocaine, and PCP), drug paraphernalia, and more than $60,000 cash.

            “The organizations peddling poison on our streets and in our communities need to know that they are on the radar of law enforcement and we intend to put them out of business,” said U.S. Attorney Matthew M. Graves. “Neither the drugs these groups spread nor the violence their operations attract will be tolerated.”

            “This investigation demonstrates the collective commitment of the FBI, DEA, and MPD’s Violent Crime Impact Team (VCIT) to dismantling street crews who are the purveyors of the illicit drugs that drive the violent crime in our communities,” said Wayne A. Jacobs, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Washington Field Office's Criminal and Cyber Division. “Together with our law enforcement partners, the FBI will continue to hold those accountable who traffic in the violence and narcotics responsible for causing the irreparable damage to the neighborhoods we all live and work in.”

            “DEA’s top priority is combatting the current fentanyl crisis and the drug-related violence that is devastating the very foundation of our community and family structures,” said Jarod Forget, Special Agent in Charge of the DEA Washington Division. “Enforcement actions like this, along with our federal, state, and local partners, make a huge impact in our area and we will not stop working until we have rid our neighborhoods of these harms.”

            “Each and every day, the men and women of the Metropolitan Police Department and our federal law enforcement partners continue to hold people accountable for committing crimes in the District of Columbia,” said Robert J. Contee III, Chief of the Metropolitan Police Department of the District of Columbia. “This investigation is yet another example of how local, regional, and federal law enforcement partners are making the region safer.”

            The arrests followed a joint investigation by the FBI Washington Field Office Cross Border Task Force and the DEA Washington Field Office, with assistance from MPD’s Violent Crime Suppression Division and the Prince George’s County Police Department. The Cross Border Task Force is a part of the FBI’S Safe Streets Initiative and targets the most egregious and violent street crews operating in the District of Columbia.

            This case is being investigated by the Washington Field Office of the FBI and DEA, the Metropolitan Police Department, and the Prince George’s County Police Department.  Valuable assistance was provided by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maryland and the Baltimore/Washington High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) program.

            This investigation is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach. Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at www.justice.gov/OCDETF.

            It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Nihar Mohanty and George P. Eliopoulos of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia.

An indictment is merely an allegation, and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Updated January 12, 2023