LOUISVILLE, Ky. (July 16th, 2018) – United States Attorney Russell Coleman today announced the arrests and indictments of eight defendants from Taylor and Marion Counties on conspiracy charges to sell methamphetamine and cocaine. Multiple law enforcement agencies including the Kentucky State Police (KSP), the Columbia, Kentucky, High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) Task Force, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) served federal arrest warrants this morning in an on-going investigation into drug trafficking in south central Kentucky.
“These arrests and indictments are testament to a renewed sense of collaboration amongst those that protect our Commonwealth from narcotics trafficking” stated U.S. Attorney Russell Coleman “As long as some persist in flooding Kentucky communities with their poison, they will be met with federal, state, and local law enforcement standing shoulder to shoulder.”
Eight defendants were charged in three separate indictments on July 11, 2018, by a federal grand jury meeting in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Defendants Christopher Shipp, Matthew Smothers, and Patricia McNear are charged with conspiring to distribute methamphetamine in Marion County, Kentucky, between March and June of 2016. Mickey DeWayne Watson is charged in a four-count indictment with possession and conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine in Taylor County, Kentucky, during June and August of 2016. Further, William Downs, Rashad Dunn, Cali Gomez and Keyaira Grider are charged in a single count indictment with conspiracy to possess and intent to distribute cocaine base during April and May of 2016 in Taylor County, Kentucky.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Larry Fentress and is being investigated by the KSP and the Columbia HIDTA Task Force with assistance from ATF, DEA and the Lebanon, Campbellsville, and Columbia Kentucky Police Departments.
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The indictment of a person by a Grand Jury is an accusation only and that person is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.