Wednesday, October 22, 2014  
Search By Keyword


Local meth traffickers sentenced to federal prison

POTTER
A crackdown on meth traffickers has landed 15 local dealers behind bars for more than 12 years in the federal penitentiary.

The sentences, announced Thursday by District Attorney General Dale Potter, come as part of a round-up conducted last September by an 18-county meth task force which targeted repeat meth offenders. Over 100 suspects were arrested across the state, with Warren and Van Buren counties accounting for 20 percent of the total arrests.

Those arrested as part of the operation had their cases heard in federal court. Local charges were dismissed due to the fact federal sentences run longer and require the defendants to serve their entire prison sentence before being released on supervised parole.

"It will keep several of the defendants off the street for a considerable amount of time, as the defendants have to serve the entire time before they are released on federal supervised probation," Potter said. "This is the first major round-up using the U.S. Attorney's office to assist with the meth problem in this district."

While sending the numerous defendants off, some for long jail terms, Potter said meth continues to be a problem here. Given this fact, Potter said he foresees indictments against merchants who have sold and are selling chemicals used to make the illegal drug.

"Those distributing products knowing it is used to manufacture meth are just as involved as the person who makes the drug or sells it on the street," Potter said. "While many of the merchants get the instant cash profit, they fail to see the problems it creates for our community. Sometime in the near future we will see some of those selling the products to manufacture meth indicted in federal court."

Potter pointed out irresponsible sales of such products costs the community in many ways, including but not limited to a heavier workload for law enforcement, jail overcrowding, clean up costs for meth labs and larger court dockets.

Included in those sentenced in federal court as result of the operation are:

• Dortha Elkins for conspiracy to manufacture meth. She must serve 12 years and seven months in prison and spend three years on parole.

• Michael T. Woods for conspiracy to manufacture meth. He must serve 10 years and spend five years on parole.

• Scott Muncey for distribution of meth. He must serve nine years and nine months and spend four years on parole.

• Darrell Hobbs for conspiracy to manufacture meth. He must serve seven years and three months and spend three years on parole.

• Cecil Swoveland for manufacture of meth. He must serve six years and spend three years on parole.

• James Peterson for manufacture of meth. He must serve five years and seven months and spend three years on parole.

• Jeff Bailey for possession of chemicals to manufacture meth. He must serve three years and four months and spend two years on parole.

• Natasha Cox for conspiracy to manufacture meth. She must serve three years and one month and spend five years on parole.

• Sammy Walker for conspiracy to manufacture meth. He must serve three years and one month and spend three years on parole.

• Robert Grissom for conspiracy to manufacture meth. He must serve two years and six months and spend three years on parole.

• Ethan Weismore for manufacture of meth. He must serve two years and spend three years on parole.

• Jamison Klod for attempted manufacture of meth. He must serve 15 months and spend three years on parole.

• Tracy Jennings for conspiracy to manufacture meth. He must serve 21 months and spend three years on parole.

• Glenn Wright for aiding in the manufacture of meth. He must serve one year and spend three years on parole.

• Sandra Wright for aiding in the manufacture of meth. She must serve one year and spend three years on parole.

Four defendants are awaiting sentencing for their charges. They include Jeff Bryant on Aug. 12, Mark Grissom on July 12, Donnie Simmons on July 12, and Joe D. Simmons on Sept. 10. Jeff Medley will stand trial before a jury on his charges July 9.