Twenty-two indicted for trafficking heroin and cocaine in Toledo
Twenty-two people indicted for their roles in a conspiracy to traffic large amounts of heroin and cocaine in Toledo, law enforcement officials said.
Named in the 72-count indictment are: Gary R. Hill, Sr., 62, of Lathrup Village, Michigan; Tyrone Watson, 45, of Sylvania; Keith Cooke, 51, of Southfield, Michigan; Leroy L. Hooker, 47; Larry E. Stewart, 50; Andre Anderson, 47; Andre Arthur, 38; Anthony Ballard, 24; Ivan Ballard, 26; James Bragg, Sr., 43; Dominique Brown, 25; Keith Chisholm, 38; Vincent Cooke, 69;, Dennis Garrett, 26; Victor Hardison, 57; Dorian Hooker, 42; Robert Jackson, 41; Cedrick Smith, 25; Damond Smith, 26; Marcus Stephens, 37; Jerome Toyer, 46, and Demond Washington, 36, all of Toledo.
All 22 defendants are charged with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute heroin and cocaine. The indictment details large shipments of heroin, including a December 2, 2016 sale of nearly seven kilograms of cocaine and nearly four kilograms of heroin, according to the indictment.
The defendants worked together to bring kilogram-level amounts of heroin and cocaine from the Detroit area and sell the drugs in and around Toledo. This took place between from 2012 through this year, according to the indictment.
Hill, Leroy Hooker and Keith Cooke recruited friends and relatives in Toledo to distribute heroin and cocaine. Hill and others in Detroit and Toledo supplied Hooker and Keith Cooke with drugs. Stewart and Brown drove between Detroit and Toledo transporting drugs and money on behalf of Hill, Leroy Hooker and Keith Cooke, according to the indictment.
Some of the defendants used residences in Toledo to store and distribute the heroin and cocaine, including locations on Rockingham Street, Barrows Street, Ogden Avenue, West Delaware Avenue, Bryant Court and Nantucket Drive, as well as locations in Southfield, Lathrup and Detroit, Michigan, according to the indictment.
Several of the defendants are charged with distribution of heroin for sales that took place between 2012 and 2016. Leroy Hooker, Demond Washington and Chisholm face additional charges for having guns despite felony convictions that prohibit them from possessing firearms, according to the indictment.
“We will continue to seek long prison sentences for drug traffickers,” said Carole S. Rendon, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio. “Aggressive enforcement, coupled with increased access to treatment for those who want help, changes in prescribing practices and more education are all required to combat the opioid epidemic that his devastated our state.”
“Unfortunately, heroin and cocaine continue to plague our communities,” FBI Special Agent in Charge Stephen D. Anthony said. “Law enforcement will hold these individuals, and any others, that bring illegal narcotics to our streets accountable in a court of law.”
“We are very happy with the results of this investigation,” said Toledo Police Chief George Kral. “Detecting, investigating, and charging these drug trafficking groups, and working diligently in keeping Toledo’s streets free of this poison is and will always be a priority of mine. These results also show the high level of cooperation and interaction we enjoy with our federal, local, and state law enforcement partners.”
If convicted, the defendants’ sentences will be determined by the court after reviewing factors unique to this case, including the defendants’ prior criminal record, if any, the defendants’ role in the offense and the characteristics of the violation. In all cases the sentence will not exceed the statutory maximum and in most cases it will be less than the maximum.
This case was investigating by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Toledo Metro Drug Task Force, which is comprised of personnel from the Toledo Police Department, FBI, ATF, and Lucas County Sheriff's Office. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Thomas P. Weldon and Alissa M. Sterling.
An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. Defendants are entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.