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Sirens & Gavels

Posts tagged: drug dealing

Suspect in cash ring faces heroin count

A woman already facing federal charges for a counterfeit money ring has been indicted by a grand jury on a heroin charge.

Tawny Michelle Rhodes, 39, faces not less than five years and no more than 40 years if convicted of possession with intent to distribute 100 grams or more of heroin, but she could get at least 10 years if she has a previous drug convictions.

Rhodes was sentenced to 18 months in prison on state drug charges last month but is in the Spokane County Jail awaiting trial in U.S. District Court for allegedly manufacturing fake money between May and August.

Also charged in the counterfeit cash scheme are Cole T. Monson, Melissa A. Smith, Ronald Dale Mueller, 44; Brandy Mueller, Jessica Crabtree and Robin Knuttgen.

Crime Stoppers targets 2 drug suspects

Crime Stoppers is offering rewards for tips that lead to the arrest of two accused drug dealers.

Tysen R. Foster, 25, is charged with four drug felonies related to alleged cocaine transactions with confidential informants in February, March and April, and from a jail strip searched that revealed cocaine in his anus, according to court documents.

A $20,000 arrest warrant was issued Aug. 15 after Foster didn't show up for his arraignment.

Also wanted is Darcy Deanne Kern, 44, who is accused of selling heroin on two occasions last summer. She also faces possession charges for heroin that was found during a traffic stop on Aug. 18, 2010. Kern told detectives she bought the heroin in Seattle, according to court documents.

Police found a Jennings .22 caliber semi-automatic in her 2001 Pontiac Grand Prix, which she's prohibited from possessing because of a previous felony drug conviction, documents say.

Kern is charged with second-degree unlawful possession of a firearm and four felony drug charges. A $5,000 arrest warrant was issued Aug. 17 after she didn't show up for an arraignment.

Kern, 5-foot-7 and 140 pounds, last gave a home address in the 5800 block of North Elgin Street in Spokane County.

Foster, 5-foot-10 and 165 pounds, is a transient, accoridng to Crime Stoppers.

Anyone with information on their current location is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS or submit tips online. Tipsters do not have to give their name to collect a reward but should leave a code name or number.

Casino-going meth dealer gets 15 years

A longtime methamphetamine dealer who's never served more than two years in prison was sentenced recently to 15 years.

David B. Hill, 42, was arrested with large amounts of cash and meth three times in nine months, the last occurring Sept. 19, three days before a grand jury indicted him on federal drug charges.

Hill had 3 ounces of meth and more than $14,000 in his car. He was arrested Aug. 24 with 7 ounces of meth and about $5,000, and on Jan. 18, 2010, with 18 ounces of meth and $15,000 near Northern Quest Casino.

Hill sold large quantities of meth from Spokane motels and frequented gambled with large amounts of cash at Northern Quest.

Hill was sentenced to 180 months in prison Monday, to be followed by six years of probation. His lawyer, John McEntire, had asked for 13 years, saying his client needs treatment for his drug addiction and dreams of making a living modifying cars and motorcycles.

McEntire said Hill's three arrests in just nine months were “shocking.”

“That is not rational thinking; instead, it is decision making motivated solely by a nearly thirty-year addiction to methamphetamine,” McEntire wrote. “Simply put, he needed to sell to support his daily habit, which amounted to approximately 2 grams of methamphetamine per day.”

McEntire noted that Hill has never served more than 24 months.

“This significant sentence increase represents the harsh difference between state and federal drug penalties,” McEntire wrote. “It also represents a complete shock for Mr. Hill.”

Meth suspect nabbed after chase in Idaho

A convicted Spokane methamphetamine maker awaiting trial in federal court was arrested during a police chase in North Idaho today.

William Troy Tomblin, 40, was on a motorcycle when the U.S. Marshals Service began pursuing him in the area Wilbur Avenue in Coeur d'Alene.

The chase continued to the area of North Ramsey Road and Wyoming Avenue in Hayden about 3:15 p.m. before Tomblin drove his motorcycle into tree near Lancaster Avenue and Hayden Lake Road and ran into the woods on foot.

The Kootenai County Sheriff's Department and Idaho State Police helped set up a perimeter, and Tomblin was located before a K-9 arrived.

Tomblin was transported to the Spokane County Jail on a federal warrant related to a January grand jury indictment charging him with possession with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of pure methamphetamine. He's scheduled to go on trial in August with a co-defendant, Wheeler Joseph Paavola, 29.

Paavola, who has at least eight felony methamphetamine convictions dating back to 2001, has been in jail since February, but Tomblin had been allowed out pending trial.

Tomblin has previous drug and stolen property convictions and was sentenced to 39 months in state prison in 2006 for manufacturing methamphetamine.

Man w/ 50 lbs of pot jailed in Oregon

A Spokane man arrested in Oregon with 50 pounds of marijuana on Sunday remains in jail.

Michael Allen Orman, 30, has previous drug convictions in Spokane County in 2007 and 2006.

Police say he was driving a rented Dodge Charger when he was stopped about 7:15 p.m. Sunday for a traffic violation on Interstate 5 near Grants Pass.

Orman was wanted in Marion County, Ore., on a felony warrant for money laundering, according to Oregon State Police. His license also was suspended.

Orman was booked into Josephine County Jail on the felony warrant and the rental vehicle was towed and impounded.

Troopers obtained a search warrant for the vehicle Monday and found about 50 pounds of marijuana in the trunk, authorities said.

Orman is in the Josephine County Jail on charges of unlawful possession of marijuana and unlawful distribution of marijuana, as well the money laundering count.

2 cars, 3 lbs of pot seized in Cheney

A multi-agency marijuana investigation led to the seizure of two cars and 3 1/2 pounds of marijuana in Spokane County recently.

Cheney resident Brandon M. Collins, 27, is believed to have led the operation, which detectives say distributed more than five pounds of pot each week, mostly in Cheney and at Eastern Washington University.

Collins was arrested last Thursday following several undercover drug sales, according to a news release. He left jail on Friday after being released on his own recognizance. Investigators say Collins picked up several pounds of pot in Bellevue and often made deliveries while working for a cellular phone store in Cheney.

A second suspect, identified as a 25-year-old EWU student, has not been arrested or charged.

Investigators working with the Washington State Gambling Commission and Northern Quest Casino say Collins and his associates “appear to have laundered more than $380,000 through the casino during the last three years,” according to a news release by Sgt. Dave Reagan.

The investigation is being conducted by the Spokane Regional Drug Task Force, which is comprised of investigators from the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office, Spokane Police and Spokane Valley Police Departments, Washington State Patrol, Drug Enforcement Agency and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

Jury indicts 2 longtime meth dealers

Two longtime Spokane methamphetamine dealers have been indicted by a federal grand jury. 

Wheeler Joseph Paavola (left) and William Troy Tomblin (right) are charged with possession with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of pure methamphetamine.

Both men face at least 20 years in prison and 10 years probation because of prior drug convictions.

Paavola has at least eight felony methamphetamine convictions dating back to 2001. He's been to state prison at least four times, most recently in 2008 after pleading guilty to two counts of possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver.

In 2007, he and his then-girlfriend were arrested after police investigating a domestic violence report found them with meth. Their 2- month old child was put in foster care.

Tomblin has previous drug and stolen property convictions and was sentenced to 39 months in state prison in 2006 for manufacturing methamphetamine. Neither man has appeared in U.S. District Court on the new charge yet.

Mom, son, grandma face crack charges

The daughter of a Spokane woman accused of helping her 14-year-old grandson sell crack cocaine is facing a lengthy federal prison sentence for the same drug.

Nicole D. Hilliard is “doing well” in treatment for drug treatment and is expected to participate until the middle of February, according to court documents prepared by her lawyer.

Hilliard's son and mother, Tyna A. Hilliard, were arrested last week after a confidential informant bought crack cocaine from the boy, who police say was driven to the scene by Tyna Hilliard.

“Tyna advised that she had complete knowledge of (the boy) selling the crack cocaine,” according to a probable cause affidavit prepared by Spokane police. The informant said the boy had said “that he pays his grandmother to drive him around since he was only 14 and did not have a license.”

Tyna Hilliard, 53, was released from jail on her own recognizance last week and is to be arraigned Jan. 3.

Her daughter pleaded guilty to a federal charge of possession with intent to deliver 50 grams or more of cocaine in October after being indicted last summer.  She's to be sentenced early next year in U.S. District Court in Spokane. The charge carries a minimum of 10 years in prison and a four years probation, or at least 20 years in prison if she has a previous felony drug conviction, which she does not appear to have in Spokane County.

Nicole Hilliard does have previous felony convictions locally for first-degree robbery and attempted first-degree robbery in connection with the shooting death of a man during a dice game in 2002.

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