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Portsmouth Criminal Defense Law Blog

Virginia professor, inmates charged in drug delivery case

A 40-year-old man who teaches history at Hampton University is among four people charged in a case involving drugs being smuggled behind bars. The other three people charged are inmates at the Newport News jail.

Letters were sent to the inmates at the jail over several separate days. One letter included heroin while the others included marijuana, rolling papers and tobacco.

Man faces charges after allegedly bringing drugs into jail

A Virginia man is facing additional charges for allegedly bringing drugs into jail. The 48-year-old man was originally charged with possession of marijuana and taken to Richmond City Jail. During a routine search on March 31, authorities in the jail allegedly discovered other controlled substances concealed in the lining of the man's clothing.

Authorities conducted tests, which they say confirmed that the man had brought heroin and cocaine into the facility. He was charged with possession of drugs by a prisoner and two counts of possession of a controlled substance. If convicted of those drug charges, the man's time in jail could be lengthened.

Virginia city official facing drug charges, resigns

A Winchester City official resigned his position a week after police charged him with possessing marijuana and soliciting a prostitute on March 27. His arrest was the result of an undercover operation, which involved many local and regional agencies. The official now faces misdemeanor solicitation and drug charges.

According to officials, the official was taken into custody on the suspicion that he was trying to solicit services from a prostitute. While he was being processed, police say that they found marijuana and paraphernalia for smoking it in his possession. He was released from the Shenandoah County Jail on an unsecured bond after being booked. He is scheduled to appear in court on April 14.

Woman sentenced to 2 years for manufacturing meth

On March 27, a woman accused of cooking methamphetamine by Virginia State Police and the Salem Police was sentenced to two years in prison. According to the report, the 51-year-old woman, who pleaded guilty to four charges related to drug crimes on January 30, faced up to 24 years.

The two police agencies raided the woman's home on March 9, 2013. The authorities stated that, since the home was within 800 feet of an elementary school and a high school, the raid did not occur until after school hours. The agents working the case stated that they had to break a window in the home due to the methamphetamine fumes present in the basement.

Man convicted of drug charges from 2012

A 49-year-old man was sentenced to spend over four years in prison in a Virginia court recently. His charges resulted from the efforts of an extended police investigation of the drug trade in western Virginia. The man, a resident of North Carolina, was indicted in December 2012 for selling a firearm to a felon, possessing illegal drugs while in possession of a firearm and four charges of selling illegal drugs. He was one of 84 individuals indicted as a result of that investigation.

The prosecution ultimately chose to dismiss the charge regarding the sale of a firearm. After the man was convicted of the remaining charges, the Patrick County Circuit Court ordered the man to pay fines totaling $2,000 as well as unspecified amount of court costs and restitution. His combined sentences amounted to 45 years in prison; however, aside from four years and nine months, the prison time was suspended.

Woman accused of Virginia Beach robberies

On March 18, the Virginia Beach Commonwealth's Attorney's Office announced that the state had taken a woman into custody in connection with the robbery of a 7-11 and another convenience store in Virginia Beach. Police believe that two woman robbed both locations, as well as a fast food restaurant and a gas station located in Chesapeake. These alleged robberies began about a month ago. The accused woman, a 23-year-old Portsmouth resident, was not charged in connection with the events in Chesapeake following her arrest.

The alleged method of operation in each of the robberies is the same. The affidavit in support of the search warrant claims that one or two women entered each of the four locations with a handgun and asked for money. The women were said to be both be wearing pink scarves over their faces and similar clothing. They were also believed to have similar features. Witnesses reported seeing a black sedan at two of the four locations.

Employee at Virginia hospital facing larceny, drug charges

The Northwest Virgina Drug Task Force took a medical center employee into custody after investigators received information regarding possible drug activity taking place at a home in the 1000 block of Franklin Street in Winchester. On March 18, officers searched the residence and reportedly discovered stolen medical supplies, prescription drugs and marijuana.

According to an information officer with the Winchester Police Department, agents arrived at the home and spoke with a person inside. Officers were then given consent to search the residence. The defendant is facing drug charges and other offenses including petty larceny, possession of marijuana and possession of narcotics. The information officer noted that the case was unique because investigators rarely find stolen medical supplies in a person's home.

Barbershop owner arrested

The owner and only employee of a small Virginia barbershop has been taken into custody on drug charges. The charges came after a four-month investigation that involved techniques including controlled drug purchases, interviews and surveillance. The barbershop is located next to the Greene County Courthouse, and it is also near public schools and a church.

Police allegedly seized 1.5 ounces of marijuana, some digital scales, and prescription pills, including Vicodin and Percocet, which are schedule II drugs, from the shop. The shop owner, a 48-year-old Culpeper man, was taken into custody when the search warrant was executed. He is facing a number of drug charges, including possession and intent to distribute marijuana, Vicodin and Percocet.

23 in custody following Virginia drug sweep

On March 13, law enforcement officials conducted a massive drug sweep across Caroline County as part of a year-long undercover investigation called Operation Sunrise. In total, 23 people were taken into custody during the sweep, including a mother and her daughter. Seven of the 23 are facing felony drug charges for allegedly distributing or possessing prescription pills.

According to the Caroline County Sheriff's Department, the issue of illicit prescription pill use is the fastest-growing kind of substance abuse in the U.S.A. Trust for America's Health survey revealed that in 2012, 6.1 million U.S. residents abused prescription medications. In addition to prescription drugs, the task force is reportedly targeting individuals suspected of distributing cocaine, heroin, Ecstasy and marijuana.

Virginia man charged in alleged drug ring case

A 23-year-old man from Fairfax County made a court appearance before a district judge on March 6 as part of what is being called a multi-million dollar marijuana distribution operation spanning several states. During what authorities dubbed "Operation Weed Whacker" in 2013, the alleged drug ring was taken apart. The widespread organization was initially discovered in 2012, and the operation that brought them down following an investigation spanning eight months involved the Sacramento Police Department, the District Attorney's Narcotics Enforcement Team of Montgomery County, the FBI, district attorney's offices from several counties in Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania State Police.

The man turned himself in to authorities after an arrest warrant was issued in February following a Jan. 30 criminal complaint. He was arraigned in district court on charges related to criminal use of a communication service, corrupt organizations, conspiracy and possession of marijuana with intent to deliver. The bail was $50,000 unsecured, and a preliminary hearing is scheduled for March 17 in the case.


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