11 face heroin charges in Stafford County
BY KEITH EPPS / THE FREE LANCE–STAR
Eleven people were indicted in Stafford County Thursday as part of an ongoing county- and region-wide investigation into heroin trafficking, police said.
The indictments followed raids early Thursday morning at two Stafford residences, Sheriff Charles Jett said. The residences were identified as 42 Lightfoot Drive in Augustine subdivision off Mountain View Road and 22 Oak Road in the Garrisonville area.
Six of the 11 suspects were arrested following the raids, and three had not been picked up as of last night. Two of the suspects were already in jail on other charges.
The 11 were not working as a group and the offenses that resulted in the charges took place primarily in December and January, court records show.
Jett said his office has been focusing more heavily on heroin because there have been 12 confirmed deaths from heroin overdoses over the past year. He said other area localities are having similar problems.
“Everybody is talking about heroin and the deaths and addictions associated with it,” Jett said. “We have never seen this many deaths in such a short time associated with a particular drug.”
The current investigation has intensified in recent months, the sheriff said, and has included undercover drug buys and the use of confidential informants.
Stafford investigators are primarily focused on identifying dealers in the county, particularly those associated with the fatal overdoses, Jett said.
Six of the 11 people indicted Thursday are charged with distributing heroin.
Jett said police have not yet identified the people who sold the heroin used in the fatal incidents, but said they will face more than just distribution charges once they are arrested.
“We want the dealers to know they will have severe consequences,” Jett said. “Their product is killing people and ruining lives.”
State Attorney General Mark Herring has been meeting with law-enforcement officials around the state and heroin has been a major topic.
At one of the meetings, Culpeper Sheriff Scott Jenkins said there have been 20 deaths from heroin overdoses since he took office in January of last year and numerous non-fatal overdoses.
Jett said his detectives are working with others around the area and region, including state and federal authorities. “This is a nationwide issue and it’s been getting worse,” Jett said.
Indicted on distribution and other charges Thursday were: Anthony Pakchanian, 23, of the Lightfoot Drive residence; Jeannine Scenters, 40, of the Oak Road address; James Anthony Cox, 25, of Stafford; James Beverly, 32, of Woodford; Robert James Ruff, 20, of Stafford; and Malcolm Wayne Moore, 42, of Stafford.
Charged with possessing heroin and related offenses are Jimmy Mills Jr., 34, Cynthia Louise Miller, 48, Daniel Ringler, 21, Jason Matthew Monroe, 22, and Corey Martin Waters, 20, all of Stafford.
Mills, Waters and Cox were still at large last night. Anyone with information regarding their whereabouts is asked to call the Sheriff’s Office at 540/658-4450 or Crime Solvers at 540/659-2020.
Keith Epps: 540/374-5404
CORRECTION: Due to an error in a police report, an earlier version of this story listed 22 Oak Drive as a residence involved in the investigation. The correct address is 22 Oak Road.