Pickaway News Journal

Thu, Jun 22, 2017

Two will serve 11 years for large local drug ring

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Thomas M. Binkley II (left) and Erica D. Moretti were sentenced this week to serve a mandatory 11 years in state prison. (Photos courtesy of the Pickaway County Sheriff's Office)

CIRCLEVILLE - Two of the people accused of being "upper management" in a large drug operation between Columbus and Circleville will spend at least the next 11 years in state prison for the crime.

Thomas M. Binkley II, 33, and Erica D. Moretti, 26, were sentenced this week after pleading guilty to charges of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity and trafficking in cocaine in Pickaway County Common Pleas Court.

Binkley must serve a mandatory 11 years with an additional seven years suspended, according to Jayme Fountain, assistant county prosecutor. Moretti must serve a mandatory 11 years with an additional five years suspended.

At a press conference March 25, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine said the operation that resulted in 72 indictments had been selling heroin in Pickaway County like a pizza delivery service, setting up shop in various homes, taking orders by phone and delivering drugs to buyers throughout the area.

A total of 17 people were included in the ranks of "upper and middle management," with the remaining 55 charged with possession of cocaine and/or heroin.

Eleven of those 17, the "upper management," are charged with engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, which is a state-level charge of organized crime.

In addition to the two sentenced this week, Nicole Grambo, 35, pleaded guilty May 27 to her charges of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, trafficking in cocaine and trafficking in heroin. She was sentenced to four years in state prison at Marysville, plus an additional four years suspended, and five years of community control.

The status of the cases for the remaining "upper management" suspects, all charged with engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity and trafficking in cocaine and/or heroin, are:

  • Dejon Dunning, 27, is set for jury trial Aug. 13.
  • David Caslin, 44, is set for jury trial Aug. 13.
  • Andrew Swift, 45, is set for a pretrial hearing June 12.
  • Anesha Swift, 25, pleaded guilty May 28. She will be sentenced following a pre-sentence investigation by the court.
  • Jessica Dodge, 34, pleaded guilty May 21. She will be sentenced following a pre-sentence investigation by the court.
  • Jermaine Bozeman, 31, has filed for a motion hearing to be held June 17.

The remaining two suspects, Reashawn Dunning, 30, and Reuben Joyner, have not yet been brought to face their charges in Pickaway County Common Pleas Court.

Of the six suspects identified as "middle management" of the operation, all charged with trafficking in cocaine and/or heroin, only one has been sentenced to date.

Arnold Pennington Jr., 35, was sentenced to 30 months in state prison on April 29. His sentence includes time for a charge of escape from a previous case.

  • Lindsey Pyle, 20, has already pleaded guilty to her charges on June 4 and will be sentenced following a pre-sentence investigation by the court.
  • Elisa Leasure, 41, is set for jury trial July 13.
  • Rodney Evans, 46, is set for jury trial July 16.
  • Pamela Swift, 44, is set for jury trial July 16.
  • Betsy Vangundy, 22, is set for a hearing on a motion for treatment in lieu of conviction on June 23. A jury trial is set for June 29.

The status of the cases for the remaining 55 suspects, each charged with possession of cocaine and/or heroin, will be updated next week.

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