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Press Release

Member of Cherry Hill’s Hillside Drug Distribution Conspiracy Sentenced to 20 Years in Federal Prison

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Maryland
Second Conspirator Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison

Baltimore, Maryland – U.S. District Judge George L. Russell III sentenced Jerryan Burrell, a/k/a Rhino, age 31, of Baltimore, today to 20 years in prison, followed by five years of supervised release, for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute heroin, powder and crack cocaine, marijuana, and oxycodone. On March 8, 2017, Judge Russell sentenced Devin Rodgers, a/k/a Donkey and Dick Butkus, age 21, of Baltimore, to 10 years in prison, followed by five years of supervised release, on the same charge. Burrell and Rodgers admitted that they were members of Hillside, a drug distribution conspiracy which operated for 14 years in the Cherry Hill section of Baltimore.


The sentences were announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Daniel L. Board, Jr. of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives - Baltimore Field Division; Commissioner Kevin Davis of the Baltimore Police Department; and Baltimore City State’s Attorney Marilyn J. Mosby.


“Although the only crime charged in this case is a drug conspiracy, the allegations against the Hillside group includes 13 murders and 21 non-fatal shootings,” said U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein. “Conspiracy cases are a valuable tool to put violent gangs out of business.”


According to Burrell’s and Rodgers’ plea agreements, from at least 2002, a group known as Hillside distributed powder and crack cocaine, heroin, oxycodone and marijuana, primarily in the Cherry Hill Shopping Center and other locations throughout Cherry Hill, and in west and southwest Baltimore City. Members of Hillside used the proceeds of their narcotics sales to purchase firearms, to enrich themselves, and to further the activities of the organization. Hillside members used residences in and around Cherry Hill to cut and package drugs for distribution. Only trusted members of Hillside, such as Burrell and Rodgers, were admitted to these locations while the drugs were being prepared for sale. In an effort to distinguish their narcotics, Burrell, Rodgers and other Hillside members used colored topped vials or colored the drugs with food coloring.


Burrell and Rodgers admitted that they distributed heroin, marijuana, cocaine and other narcotics. According to the plea agreements, video recordings show that Burrell and Rodgers were in the Hillside stash houses, along with other Hillside members.


During Burrell’s and Rodgers’ involvement in the Hillside drug conspiracy, it was reasonably foreseeable to them that the conspiracy involved between one and three kilograms of heroin, between 280 and 840 grams of crack cocaine, between five and 15 kilograms of powder cocaine, as well as marijuana and oxycodone.


Members of Hillside, including Burrell, also committed acts of violence in order to fund their narcotics activities and intimidate others who would interfere with their narcotics trafficking. For example, on January 16, 2011, Burrell and another Hillside member committed an armed robbery with a loaded .22 caliber handgun with an obliterated serial number. Acts of violence were also committed to discipline members within the Hillside Enterprise for transgressions, real or perceived, against the conspiracy.


Since 2013, federal prosecutors have convicted at least 35 members of three other rival drug-dealing organizations that operated in Cherry Hill: “Up da Hill,” “Little Spelman” and “Coppin Court.”


United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein praised the ATF, Baltimore Police Department, and Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s Office for their work in the investigation and thanked the FBI, Baltimore County Police Department, Anne Arundel County Police Department, and Baltimore City Sheriff’s Office for their assistance. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant United States Attorneys Seema Mittal and Patricia C. McLane, who are prosecuting this Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force case.

Updated March 10, 2017

Drug Trafficking