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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of West Virginia

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Detroit Man Who Mailed More Than $38k Worth Of Heroin To Dealers In Huntington Enters Federal Guilty Plea

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – A Detroit man who mailed more than $38,000 worth of heroin to associates located in Huntington pleaded guilty today to a federal drug charge, announced U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin.  Zachery Jose Merritt, 30, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute 100 grams or more of heroin before Chief United States District Judge Robert C. Chambers in Huntington.  
Between September 2012 and June 2013, Merritt, also known as “Zane,” mailed quantities of heroin to associates located in Huntington.  The heroin was later sold in Huntington for $125 per gram.  Drug proceeds totaling $38,250 were deposited in Merritt’s bank account.  Police said that the bank deposits were made to the defendant’s account in Huntington, though withdrawals, from the same account, were completed by Merritt in Detroit. 

During the conspiracy, Merritt also provided heroin to co-conspirator and Huntington resident, Lindsey Alyn Thacker.  Thacker, also known as “Lindsey Webb,” 29, made approximately seven trips to Detroit between the summer of 2012 through June 20, 2013 to obtain heroin and crack cocaine from Merritt.
Also during the conspiracy, Thacker and her associate, Keith Eric Wood, 28, made their Huntington residence available to acquaintances for the purpose of storing and distributing heroin.  Law enforcement officers conducted a search of the residence on June 20, 2013 and found approximately .3 grams of heroin and more than $1000 in cash. 

Thacker and Wood each pleaded guilty on Nov. 5 to maintaining a residence for the purpose of distributing heroin.  Both defendants face up to 20 years in federal prison when they are sentenced on Feb. 18, 2014.               

Merritt faces up to 40 years in prison when he is sentenced on Feb. 18, 2014. 

The Huntington Violent Crimes and Drug Task Force conducted the investigations.  Assistant United States Attorney Gregory McVey is in charge of the prosecutions. 

Updated January 7, 2015