10 Co-Defendants Plead Guilty In Historic Warner Robins Drug Ring Bust
Undercover investigation into prolific operation lasted several years
MACON— The co-defendants involved in what is considered to be the largest heroin and fentanyl bust ever in Warner Robins have all pleaded guilty to their crimes in federal court, said U.S. Attorney Charles “Charlie” Peeler. These defendants entered pleas in February and March 2019. The final co-defendant, Jonathan Haslem, entered a guilty plea on Friday, March 8, 2019 in Macon federal court before The Honorable Marc Treadwell. Sentencing dates have not been set. The co-defendants are as follows:
- Travis Cyntelle McKenzie a/k/a “Showtime”, 39, of Warner Robins, GA (Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute Controlled Substances)
- Thomas Jeffery Locke, 53, Taylor County, GA (Possession with Intent to Distribute Cocaine and Heroin)
- Justin High, 31, of Warner Robins, GA (Possession with Intent to Distribute more than 50 Kilos of Marijuana)
- Clarence Bogan a/k/a “Bush”, 39, of Warner Robins, GA (Possession with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine)
- Jonathan Haslem, 38, of Warner Robins, GA (Conspiracy)
- Tamika Lashawn Hickey, 36, of Warner Robins, GA (Possession with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine)
- Esha Hill, 29, of Warner Robins, GA (Misprision of a Felony)
- Kimseing Le, 30, of Warner Robins, GA (Conspiracy with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine)
- LaTray McKenzie, 20, of Warner Robins, GA (Two Counts of Use of a Communications Device to Facilitate Drug Trafficking)
- Kaelin Varrett, 24, of Warner Robins, GA (Possession with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine)
Travis “Showtime” McKenzie was the ring leader of the operation, according to his signed plea agreement. Mr. McKenzie admitted to leading a drug trafficking organization in Warner Robins, primarily storing and distributing large quantities of crack cocaine, methamphetamine, heroin, fentanyl, alprazolam and marijuana. The Houston County Sheriff’s Office began investigating this conspiracy in December 2014, and from March 2015 until the time of Mr. McKenzie’s arrest on June 28, 2017, more than seventy undercover controlled drug purchases were made, often with assistance from the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI).
The drugs came from various sources and were sold in multiple locations in Warner Robins. Mr. McKenzie directly controlled the sale of these narcotics, and also supplied and facilitated other co-conspirators selling directly from these locations, with near daily sales. When search warrants were executed at these and other locations connected with the drug trafficking organization, large quantities of narcotics, currency, firearms and items connected with the distribution of narcotics were found. Inside the trunk of Mr. McKenzie’s BMW 750LI, agents found $33,500, 2.8 kilograms of marijuana, 355 grams of crack cocaine, 700 alprazolam pills, 3051 grams of fentanyl, 1276 grams of heroin mixed with fentanyl, 3178 grams of meth, an AK47-style assault pistol, a 9mm semi-automatic pistol along with a number of items related to the packaging and sale of narcotics. In Mr. McKenzie’s storage unit, law enforcement seized $187,996 cash, 21.2 kilograms of marijuana, 1864 grams of fentanyl, 634 grams of crack cocaine, 276 grams of heroin, as well as ammunition and 16 firearms including rifles, shotguns and pistols.
“A thriving illegal drug ring has been put to an end in Middle Georgia,” said Charles “Charlie” Peeler, the U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia. “Our law enforcement partners with the Houston County Sheriff’s Office, the Perry Police Department, the Warner Robins Police Department and the FBI spent more than two years investigating this dangerous operation. Middle Georgia is safer because of their efforts, and I thank them for it. Dismantling drug trafficking operations continues to be a priority of this office.”
“It’s now ‘Showtime’ for Travis McKenzie and members of his drug organization as they face a federal judge to learn how long they will be separated from society,” said Chris Hacker, Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta. “Thanks to the combined investigative efforts of the U.S. Attorney Middle District of Georgia, the FBI’s Macon Resident Agency and the Houston County Sheriff’s Office this organization will no longer wreak havoc on the good citizens of Warner Robins.”
“A joint investigation between the Houston County Sheriff’s Office, the Perry Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigations has resulted in dismantling the Travis McKenzie Drug Organization. This case is a perfect example of a successful collaboration between local and federal agencies,” said Cullen Talton, Houston County Sheriff. “This operation seized what I believe to be the most heroin and fentanyl in the history of Houston County. I want to thank all of the law enforcement and judicial agencies who contributed to this successful operation.”
This case was investigated by the Houston County S.O., the Perry Police Department, the Warner Robins Police Department and the FBI, with assistance from the DEA. Assistant United States Attorney Robert McCullers is prosecuting the case for the Government.
Questions can be directed to Pamela Lightsey, Public Information Officer, United States Attorney’s Office, at (478) 621-2603 or Melissa Hodges, Public Affairs Director (Contractor), United States Attorney’s Office, at (478) 765-2362.