Categories
News Tyrone Daily Herald Archives

Local police forces aid in break-up of $2 million cocaine and heroin ring operating in Blair County

Area officers were present yesterday, along with Attorney General Tom Corbett, Senior Deputy Attorney General Dave Gorman and District Attorney Richard Consiglio, at a press conference held in Altoona to announce the break-up of a $2 million cocaine and heroin ring operating in Blair County.
Tyrone Chief of Police Joe Beachem, as well as Bellwood officer Joe Schlecht, were both on hand when the announcement was made, stating a cocaine and heroin ring, which made approximately $2 million from June 2006 to December 2007, has been broken-up by narcotics agents from the Attorney General’s Office and local police officers.
Attorney General Tom Corbett said the investigation, known as “Operation Blood Clot”, was initiated in 2003, intensified in 2006 and focused on a local drug trafficking network from sources based in New York City between 2003 and 2007.
Corbett said yesterday’s drug bust is very significant for Central Pennsylvania.
He explained the arrests included local Blair Country residents, as well as several dealers from the New York City area. Agents identified the cocaine and heroin sources as members of the notorious New York based street gang, “The Bloods”. This included the central figures of the organization; Rakim “Bo-Bo” Mayo, Randy “Braids” Hernandez and John “J-Miz” Miles.
Corbett also noted many of the gang members associated with this investigation are known to be extremely dangerous.
Evidence and testimony about the alleged drug trafficking was presented to a statewide investigating grand jury, which recommended criminal charges be filed.
The grand jury found seven of the heroin and cocaine suppliers are originally from Brooklyn, New York.
Additional members of the organization live in Blair County. These local individuals served as on-site distributors of the heroin and cocaine.
At the press conference, Corbett said the buyers used two cell phone numbers to contact the New York suppliers in order to place orders for heroin and cocaine.
The New York connections then contacted their distributors in Blair County, telling them the quantity of heroin and cocaine to deliver, the price and the location of the transaction.
According to the agents, the distributors then directed a courier to take the heroin and cocaine to a designated meeting place for the transaction.
“This organization had a very precise operation in place,” Corbett said. “Each individual had a specific job, which made every drug transaction run smoothly and efficiently.”
According to the grand jury, the money that was acquired from the sale of heroin or cocaine was wired back to New York City to Mayo, Hernandez, Myers or other Brooklyn associates.
Corbett said the charges “state that heroin and cocaine were brought from New York to Blair County on a weekly basis, sometimes as frequently as every other day.
“On-site distributors for the organization allegedly recruited local individuals to act as runners and many local drug addicts allegedly allowed the New York distributors to use their homes as “stash houses,” in exchange for heroin or cocaine.”
Corbett said that many times the “stash houses” were different from the residences where drugs were distributed and the grand jury found that the “stash house” network moved from one residence to another, sometimes staying in one location only for a few hours, in order to avoid arrest.
Corbett said that as the investigation progressed agents were able to use a confidential informant (CI) to make a series of 17 controlled purchases of cocaine and heroin. These purchases eventually led to the execution of five search warrants at various Blair County residences.
According to Corbett, “Agents seized 1,967 bags of heroin with an estimated street value of $78,680, 196 bags of cocaine with an estimated street value of $11,200, $2,700 in cash and various materials associated with the delivery and sale of drugs.”
The grand jury also found heroin or cocaine in Blair County was sometimes traded for guns, which were shipped to New York City.
“This was a dangerous organization,” Corbett said. “Anytime you have individuals trafficking, not only drugs, but gang related activity into your towns it is a serious situation. The message we have for the gang members of New York City is clear, if you plan on setting up a drug business in Pennsylvania, also plan on going to prison for a long time.”
He noted this is part of a continuing investigation.
Corbett thanked the New York City Police Department, FBI New York, Blair County District Attorney Richard Consiglio’s office and local police departments, including: Greenfield, Duncansville, North Woodbury Township, Williamsburg, Roaring Spring, Martinsburg, Tyrone, Allegheny Township, Hollidaysburg, Blair Township, Bellwood, Logan Township and Altoona for their assistance with the investigation.
Tyrone Police Chief Joe Beachem was a part of the operation since it began.
He spoke to those in attendance, saying some activity involving this drug ring has occurred in Tyrone.
Although, he added, there was “nothing in particular (in Tyrone), they were using Tyrone as well as many other areas…”
According to a press release, Hernandez, Miles and Mayo were arrested on Tuesday, Feb. 26, by New York City Police and FBI agents in New York. They will be extradited to Pennsylvania.
The defendants are scheduled to be arraigned before Altoona Magisterial District Judges Steve Jackson and Jeff Auker and will be prosecuted in Blair County by Senior Deputy Attorney General David Gorman of the Attorney General’s Drug Strike Force Section.
A list of defendants, and the charges against them, was also released at yesterday’s press conference.
New York City (Brooklyn) Bloods Gang Members:
• John “J-Miz” Miles, 19, 1019 Lafayette Avenue, Brooklyn, NY, is charged with 41 counts of possession with the intent to deliver, 34 counts of delivery, six counts of illegal use of a communications facility, two counts of corrupt organizations, and one count each of criminal conspiracy and dealing in proceeds of unlawful activity.
• Gregory “G-Baby” Brown, 19, 49 McDonnough St., Brooklyn, NY, is charged with 41 counts of possession with the intent to deliver, 34 counts of delivery, six counts of illegal use of a communications facility, two counts corrupt organizations and one count each of criminal conspiracy and dealing in proceeds of unlawful activity.
• David “Dollar” Wright, 25, originally from Brooklyn, NY, currently incarcerated at Southern State Correctional Facility, Springfield, VT, is charged with 41 counts of possession with the intent to deliver, 34 counts of delivery, six counts illegal use of a communications facility, two counts corrupt organizations and one count each of criminal conspiracy and dealing in proceeds of unlawful activity.
• Rakim “Bo/Bo-Bo” Mayo, 19, 140 Menahan St., Brooklyn, NY, is charged with 41 counts of possession with the intent to deliver, 34 counts of delivery, six counts illegal use of a communications facility, two counts corrupt organizations and one count each of criminal conspiracy and dealing in proceeds of unlawful activity.
• Johnathan “John-Boy” Tucker, 21, originally from Brooklyn, NY, currently incarcerated in the New York State penal system, is charged with 41 counts of possession with the intent to deliver, 34 counts of delivery, six counts illegal use of a communications facility, two counts corrupt organizations and one count each of criminal conspiracy and dealing in proceeds of unlawful activity.
• Randy “Braids” Hernandez, 20, 1019 Lafayette Ave., Brooklyn, NY, is charged with 41 counts of possession with the intent to deliver, 34 counts of delivery, six counts illegal use of a communications facility, two counts corrupt organizations and one count each of criminal conspiracy and dealing in proceeds of unlawful activity and
• Lemel “Gab” Myers, 20, currently incarcerated in the State Correctional Institution at Mahanoy, is charged with, 34 counts of possession with the intent to deliver, 27 counts of delivery, five counts of criminal use of a communications facility, two counts of corrupt organizations and one count each of criminal conspiracy and dealing in proceeds of unlawful activity.
Distributors for the organization included:
• Chandra Taylor, 27, RD 4, Box 203K, Tyrone, is charged with two counts of possession with the intent to deliver, two counts of delivery and one count of criminal conspiracy.
• Jessica Albright, 29, 514 Pennsylvania Ave., Apt. #13, Tyrone, is charged with two counts of possession with the intent to deliver, two counts of delivery and one count of criminal conspiracy.
• Steven Carroll, 27, 338 S. 2nd St., Bellwood, is charged with two counts of possession with the intent to deliver, two counts of delivery and one count of criminal conspiracy.
• Randy Osterhout, 26, RD 5, Box 642, Tyrone, is charged with two counts of possession with the intent to deliver, two counts of delivery and one count of criminal conspiracy.
• Brian Osterhout, 22, Spruce Street Extension, Tipton is charged with two counts of possession with the intent to deliver, two counts of delivery and one count of criminal conspiracy.
• Brittany Guida, 21, 1064 Pennsylvania Ave, Tyrone, is charged with two counts of possession with the intent to deliver, two counts of delivery and one count of criminal conspiracy.
• Charles Gummo, 27, 210 5th St., Huntingdon, is charged with two counts of possession with the intent to deliver, two counts of delivery and one count of criminal conspiracy.
Others charged include: Ashlee Claar, 21, State Correctional Institute at Muncy; Sandra Williams, 34, Claysburg; Anthony Harding, 23, Altoona; Dorrell Colbert, 21, Altoona; Michael Mock, 26, Altoona; Dustin Kelly, 23, State Correctional Institute at Graterford; Elsebeth Eaton, 46, Hollidaysburg; Jared Hoffmaster, 23, Huntingdon; Brandon England, 24, Williamsburg; Mindy Allen, 25, Altoona; Nicholas Allen, 24, Altoona; Joshua Schraff, 25, Altoona; Doug Evans, 39, State Correctional Institute at Albion; Jess Cartwright, 22, Blair County Prison and Raymond Balliet, 28, Altoona.