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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Ohio

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Nineteen People Indicted For Conspiracy Involving Heroin, Pills And Crack Cocaine In Marion

Nineteen people were indicted in federal court for their roles in a conspiracy to traffic large amounts of heroin, crack cocaine and prescription pills in Marion, Ohio.

The unsealing of the 72-count indictment was announced today by Steven M. Dettelbach, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio; Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine; Stephen D. Anthony, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Cleveland office, Marion Police Major William Collins, Marion County Sheriff Tim Bailey and Marion County Prosecutor Brent Yager.

The indictment details a two-year conspiracy in which heroin, crack cocaine, Percocet, Ritalin, Xanax and Vicodin were brought from Detroit and Fort Wayne, Indiana, to Marion, where the drugs were sold to dozens of people, including juveniles.

Indicted are: Allen Graves, 46, of Detroit; Martez Montgomery, 22, of Detroit; Terrance Lombard, 39, of Eastpoint, Mich.; Edward Hearn, 40, of Detroit; Darryl McFadden, 53, of Detroit; Jeronne White, 33, of Marion;  Christopher Prince, 20, of Detroit; Danni Childers, 21, of Marion; DeCarlos Bates21, of Hamtramck, Mich.; DeVonta Adams21, of Detroit; Jason Graves, 22, of Detroit; Marniece Love, 22, of Hazel Park, Mich.; Brittany Payne, 19, of Marion; Marcus Benson, 34, of Harper Woods, Mich.; Greg Burkett, 56, of Marion; Darrell Jacobs, 38, of Caledonia, Ohio; Danielle Sullivan, 23, of Marion; Steven Lester, 48, of Marion, and Abbee Heine, 20, of Marion.

“Our state has been flooded with heroin and diverted prescription pills, which have been accompanied by a wave of death and addiction,” Dettelbach said. “These arrests represent a joint law-enforcement effort to choke off the supply of drugs to our region.”

Anthony said: “This interstate drug trafficking organization brought danger and violence to the community through multiple shootings, overdoses and continued addiction for citizens in Marion. The FBI along with the numerous agencies that brought this group to justice will continue collaborative efforts to disrupt, dismantle and prosecute drug traffickers.”

“MARMET’s battles with traffickers from Detroit have been well documented,” said Marion Police Major William Collins. “We want this to be an example for other trafficking organizations that if they choose Marion as the place to peddle their poison, they will do real prison time.”

“Drug abuse devastates lives and tears apart families, and the individuals who are now facing charges have played a direct role in fueling addiction,” said Attorney General DeWine.  “We are proud to have assisted with this case through the work of our BCI crime lab, and we will continue to work together in the future to prevent drug abuse and trafficking in this state.”

Marion County Sheriff Tim Bailey said: “Drugs come into our community through many means and it takes and will continue to take resources from all agencies to continue the fight against the drug problem and other crimes in our community to help keep our residents and future residents of our community safe.”
Montgomery and Graves obtained heroin, crack cocaine and prescription drugs from Lombard, Hearn, Benson, McFadden and other suppliers in Detroit and Fort Wayne. They also recruited friends and family members in Detroit to travel to Marion to distribute the drugs, according to the indictment.

Montgomery and Graves, with the assistance of Heine, rented homes in Heine’s name at 438 1/2 North Prospect Street and 323 Mound Street, in Marion, for the purpose of distributing heroin, crack cocaine and prescription drugs. Childers also rented the house at 238 Park Boulevard in Marion for the purpose of distributing the drugs, according to the indictment.

Lester, as part of the conspiracy, allowed Graves and Montgomery to register vehicles in his name to avoid suspicion of law enforcement. Lester also routinely drove Graves from Marion to Detroit and back to transport drugs and drug proceeds, according to the indictment.

Prince, White, Bates, Adams, Love, Jason Graves, a juvenile and others also shared a “community telephone” which they all used to communicate with drug customers and suppliers, according to the indictment.

Prince, White, Bates, Adams, Love, Jason Graves, Lester, a juvenile and others shared and used residences rented by Allen Graves, Montgomery, Heine and Childers for the purpose of storing and distributing heroin, crack cocaine and prescription drugs, according to the indictment.

The indictment goes on to detail scores of transactions, phone calls and other actions related to their sale and distribution of drugs.

This case is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation – Cleveland, Detroit and Indianapolis Field Offices, the MARMET Drug Task Force (comprised of members of the Marion Police Department, and Marion County Sheriff’s Office), the METRICH Drug Task Force, the Ohio Attorney General’s Office, the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office, the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Ohio State Highway Patrol. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Joseph M. Pinjuh and Alissa Sterling.

An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. The defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

Updated March 12, 2015