CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — On Monday, a Cross Lanes man was sentenced to prison followed by supervised release for his role in a large-volume drug trafficking organization (DTO).
Leo Antoine Smith, 38, is the last major defendant in a case that took down a DTO that operated mostly in the Charleston, Rand and St. Albans areas of Kanawha County from March 2019 to September 2021. The DTO distributed over 160 pounds of methamphetamine plus fentanyl and other drugs.
The investigation assisted in the seizure of over 12.3 pounds of methamphetamine, about 34 firearms, more than $86,000 in cash, and several vehicles, including motorcycles.
A federal jury found Smith guilty during a two-day trial on May 26. Case evidence showed that Smith sold methamphetamine around Charleston between Fall 2020 and Sept. 21, 2021. At least once, Smith traveled to Atlanta with a co-defendant to buy methamphetamine from another co-defendant. Trial testimony, wiretap records and text messages proved that Smith distributed over 60 ounces of methamphetamine.
Smith was sentenced to 11 years and eight months in prison followed by three years of supervised release for conspiracy to distribute a quantity of methamphetamine.
The investigation also prevented a drug overdose in St. Albans and stopped four defendants from carrying out a murder plot on Charleston’s West Side in 2021. According to court records, the four defendants armed themselves at a Rand home on July 4, 2021, and drove to the West Side with plans to kill a man. Alerted to the plot, law enforcement parked several marked cruisers on the West Side. Due to the increased police presence, the men left the vehicle in a Washington Street parking lot. Law enforcement searched the vehicle and recovered four loaded firearms.
Agencies that investigated this case were the FBI, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the Kanawha County Sheriff’s Office, and police departments from Charleston, Nitro, South Charleston and St. Albans.
Seventeen individuals were indicted in this case. All major defendants were convicted of felony offenses and sentenced to the following prison terms:
- Timothy Wayne Dodd, 46, of South Charleston, to 21 years and seven months for conspiracy to distribute 500 grams or more of methamphetamine;
- Shane Kelly Fulkerson, 45, of Charleston, to 19 years and seven months for two counts of possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine;
- Ramon David Alston, 42, of Decatur, Georgia, to 12 years and six months for conspiracy to distribute 500 or more grams of methamphetamine;
- James Edward Bennett III, 31, of Charleston, to 10 years for being a felon in possession of a firearm;
- Jason Robert Oxley, 39, of St. Albans, to 10 years for conspiring to distribute 500 grams or more of methamphetamine and being a felon in possession of a firearm;
- Brian Dangelo Terry, 37, of Charleston, to 10 years for conspiracy to distribute 500 or more grams of methamphetamine and for being a felon in possession of a firearm;
- Douglas Johnathan Wesley, 33, of Charleston, to 10 years for being a felon in possession of a firearm;
- Jonathan Gregory Bush, 39, of Dunbar, to eight years and one month for conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine;
- Scott Edward Hudson, 50, of St. Albans, to seven years for intent to distribute methamphetamine and being a felon in possession of a firearm;
- Treydan Leon Burks, 32, of Charleston, to seven years for conspiracy to distribute 500 grams or more of methamphetamine;
- Angie Lane Harbour, 41, of Given, to three years and 10 months for conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine;
- Michael Antonio Smith, 50, of Charleston, to two years for being a felon in possession of a firearm.
“Too often, Charleston and the surrounding communities feel the impact of illegal drug distribution and the violence associated with it,” said Special Agent in Charge Shawn Morrow of the Louisville Field Division for the ATF. “I hope the message is clear today: ATF, the FBI, and our law enforcement partners will not let drug dealers take hold of our neighborhoods. We are committed to making our communities safe, and to holding criminals accountable for violence and drug trafficking that destroys our families.”