Joint Investigation Between DSP and DOJ Nets 35 in Operation “In The House”

GEORGETOWN, DE – In February 2015, the Delaware State Police and the Delaware Department of Justice began planning an operation designed to proactively impact violent crime in Sussex and Kent Counties. This operation targeted subjects participating in an organized criminal enterprise. Members of this network were active participants in the crimes of racketeering, murder, home invasion robbery, illegal weapons possession, and the distribution of illegal narcotics.

Operation “In The House” was initiated on March 17, 2015. Troop 4 Major Crimes Unit, Delaware State Police Homicide Unit, Sussex County Drug Unit, and the Delaware Department of Justice organized and conducted this operation with the assistance of the Sussex County Governor’s Task Force, Kent County Drug Unit, Kent County Governor’s Task Force, the Delaware State Police Special Operations Response Team (SORT), Drug Enforcement Administration – Dover Field Office (DEA), U.S Marshalls, Delaware Department of Corrections, Dover Police Department, Georgetown Police Department, and the Philadelphia Police Department. During this Operation, investigators used numerous investigative techniques to identify members involved in violent crime and the distribution of large amounts of Cocaine and Heroin in Kent and Sussex Counties.

Through the investigation, detectives were able to establish that Steven Kellam, Rhamir Waples, Richard Robinson, Shamir Stratton, Damon Bethea, and Carlton Gibbs operated in a criminal network that targeted specific victims for home invasion robberies. The victims targeted by the organization were believed to be involved in the distribution of illegal narcotics. The defendants planned and committed numerous home invasion robberies with the goal of obtaining illegal narcotics and United States Currency from the victims. The investigation revealed that the suspects would conceal their identity by donning clothing items over their faces and then make forced entry into the home of the victims and utilize firearms to commit robbery. During one of the home invasion robberies, two victims were shot and killed and during another, one victim was wounded during an exchange of gunfire.

The below subjects were linked and charged with the following crimes:

• On January 14, 2014, Victims Cletis Nelson and William Hopkins were shot and killed during a home invasion robbery within a residence located on Harmon’s Hill Road, Millsboro, DE. Steven Kellam, Richard Robinson, Rhamir Waples, Shamir Stratton, Damon Bethea, Carlton Gibbs were all charged with the home invasion and murder of the victims. Rachel Rentoul and Jackie Heverin were charged with robbery related offenses for assisting in the planning of the crime.
• Steven Kellam, Richard Robinson, and Rhamir Waples were charged with a home invasion robbery that occurred on the 28000 block of Russell Avenue in the Oak Orchard area of Millsboro on May 18, 2014. During this robbery, the suspects pistol whipped a 24 year old male.
• Steven Kellam, Richard Robinson, and Rhamir Waples were charged with an attempted home invasion that occurred on August 22, 2014. During this incident, the suspects kicked in the door of a residence on the 27000 block of Chris Drive in Millsboro but fled as the residents blocked the door and called police.
• Steven Kellam, Richard Robinson, and Rhamir Waples were charged with a December 11, 2014 home invasion robbery that occurred on the 27000 block of Sandy Drive in Millsboro. During this incident the suspects pistol whipped a 46 year old male, and assaulted a 56 year old female.
• Steven Kellam, Richard Robinson, and Rhamir Waples were charged with a December 14, 2014 home invasion robbery that occurred on the 29000 block of Cordrey Road, Millsboro. During this incident the suspects shot and wounded a 37 year old male victim.

This investigation also showed that the above subjects had relationships with several individuals heavily involved in the trade of heroin and cocaine in Sussex County. Investigators were able to determine that Jackson Vanvorst of Laurel operated a large distribution network in Sussex County and employed John Richardson, Ray Revel, and Cornell Smith in the allocation of the heroin. Investigators were also able to determine that Angelina Levan and James Johnson of Harrington were supplying Vanvorst with large amounts of heroin. Vanvorst also orchestrated a large shoplifting ring in which he would send drug users to steal pre-determined items from numerous department, hardware, and groceries stores. Vanvorst would “pay” these individuals with drugs, and he would in turn sell these items for profit in the community.

Investigators were also able to identify several large scale cocaine dealers through relationships with the individuals involved in the home invasion robberies. Australia Mackey of Millsboro was identified as operating a cocaine network in Sussex County and was distributing powder and “crack” cocaine to numerous other large scale drug dealers in Sussex. These individuals were identified as Nathan Henry, Aaron Isler, Myricka Sampson, Leondious Gibbs, Corina Lloyd, Samuel Jones, Jermichael Deshields, and Thomas Deshields. The investigation determined that Tavon Biles of Rehoboth Beach and Zachery Bates of Smyrna were supplying Mackey with large amounts of cocaine. All of the named suspects were charged with numerous drug related charges.

The first phase of Operation “In the House” ended during the first week of May 2015. The operation ended with the execution of 25 search warrants at various locations throughout Kent and Sussex County. At that time 30 individuals were indicted by a Sussex County Grand Jury. As a result of the investigation the following items were seized: 2,321.7 grams (over 2 kilograms) of Cocaine, 108.03 grams (over 7,200 bags) of Heroin, 7,921.65 grams of Marijuana, .02 grams of Methamphetamine, and 41 prescription narcotic pills. Investigators also recovered and seized $135,310.00 in United States Currency, 19 firearms and 15 vehicles. Indictments were obtained for the defendants involved in the Murders and Home Invasions on June 22, 2015. Investigations on several related incidents are still on-going.

The below individuals were arrested for the listed offenses in conjunction with their roles in the above detailed crimes. Not all listed individuals remain incarcerated with Delaware Department of Correction except for the subjects charged with Murder 1st who are held without bail:

• Steven Kellam, 34 of Dover (Photo Labeled with name at the Bottom) – 81 Charges – Murder 1st Degree, Attempted Murder 1st Degree, Racketeering, Home Invasion, Robbery 1st Degree, Attempted Robbery 1st Degree, PFDCF, PFBPP, Conspiracy 1st Degree, Conspiracy 2nd Degree, Reckless Endangering 1st Degree, Tier 4 Delivery of Narcotics, Wearing a Disguise During the Commission of a Felony. Held without bail.

• Damon Bethea, 30 of Pennsauken, NJ (Photo Labeled with name at the Bottom) – 22 Charges – Murder 1st Degree, Home Invasion, Robbery 1st Degree, Attempted Robbery 1st Degree, PFDCF, Conspiracy 1st Degree, Conspiracy 2nd Degree. Held without bail.

• Carlton Gibbs, 40 of Millsboro (Photo Labeled with name at the Bottom) –23 Charges – Murder 1st Degree, Home Invasion, Robbery 1st Degree, Attempted Robbery 1st Degree, PFDCF, PFBPP, Conspiracy 1st Degree, Conspiracy 2nd Degree. Held without bail.

• Jackson Vanvorst, 34 of Laurel– 55 Charges – Tier 5 Possession of Heroin, Tier 2 Delivery of Heroin, Tier 4 Delivery of Heroin, Tier 4 PWITD Heroin, Possession of Cocaine, Criminal Solicitation 2nd, Conspiracy 2nd, Delivery of Cocaine, PFBPP, Delivery of Heroin, Possession of Heroin.

• Australia Mackey, 39 of Millsboro – 62 Charges – Tier 5 Possession of Cocaine, Tier 4 Delivery of Cocaine, Tier 4 PWITD Cocaine, Criminal Solicitation 2nd.

• Tavon Biles, 32 of Rehoboth Beach – 14 charges – Tier 5 Possession of Cocaine, Tier 4 Delivery of Cocaine, Conspiracy 2nd

• Zackary Bates, 31 of Smyrna – 3 Charges – Tier 5 Possession of Cocaine, Tier 4 Delivery of Cocaine, Conspiracy 2nd

• Angelina Levan, 46 of Harrington – 15 Charges – Tier 5 Possession of Heroin, Tier 4 Delivery of Heroin, Conspiracy 2nd.

• James Johnson, 45 of Harrington – 6 Charges – Tier 5 Possession of Heroin, Tier 4 Delivery of Heroin, Conspiracy 2nd

• John E. Richardson, 30 of Georgetown – 7 Charges – Tier 5 Possession of Heroin, Tier 4 Delivery of Heroin, Tier 3 Possession of Heroin, Tier 2 Delivery of Heroin, Conspiracy 2nd, Maintaining a Drug Property
• Ray Revel WMN

• Cornell B. Smith, 31 of Millsboro – 5 Charges – Tier 5 Possession of Heroin, Tier 4 Delivery of Heroin, Delivery of Heroin, Conspiracy 2nd,

• Thomas Deshields, 36 of Millsboro – 10 Charges – Tier 5 Possession of Cocaine, Tier 4 PWITD of Cocaine, Delivery of Cocaine, PWITD Cocaine, Possession of Cocaine, Conspiracy 2nd, Criminal Solicitation 2nd Degree

• Jermichael Deshields, 35 of Millsboro – 11 Charges – Tier 5 Possession of Cocaine, Tier 4 PWITD Cocaine, Tier 4 Delivery of Cocaine, Conspiracy 2nd, Criminal Solicitation 2nd

• Nathan Henry, 31 of Georgetown – 12 Charges – Tier 5 Possession of Cocaine, Tier 4 Delivery of Cocaine, Conspiracy 2nd , Criminal Solicitation 2nd

• Leondious Gibbs, 29 of Millsboro – 6 Charges – Tier 5 Possession of Cocaine, Tier 4 PWITD of Cocaine, Tier 4 Delivery of Cocaine, PFBPP, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia

• Aaron D. Isler, 34 of Ellendale – 8 Charges – Tier 5 Possession of Cocaine, Tier 4 Delivery of Cocaine, Conspiracy 2nd , Criminal Solicitation 2nd

• Anthony Hopkins, 53 of Milton – 12 Charges – Tier 5 Possession of Cocaine, Tier 4 Delivery of Cocaine, Conspiracy 2nd , Criminal Solicitation 2nd

• Corina Lloyd, 40 of Millsboro – 8 Charges – Tier 5 Possession of Cocaine, Tier 4 Delivery of Cocaine, Conspiracy 2nd , Criminal Solicitation 2nd

• Myricka A. Sampson, 33 of Harbeson – 12 Charges – Tier 5 Possession of Cocaine, Tier 4 Delivery of Cocaine, Conspiracy 2nd , Criminal Solicitation 2nd

• Desirae A. Hammel, 24 of Lewes – 2 Charges – Tier 4 Delivery of Cocaine, Conspiracy 2nd
• Perry Butler, 51 of Greenwood – 6 Charges – Tier 4 Possession of Oxycodone, Criminal Solicitation 2nd, Conspiracy 2nd , Possession of Oxycodone

• Kevin Worrell, 35 of Lewes – 4 Charges – PFBPP, Possession of Cocaine, Criminal Solicitation 2nd, Conspiracy 2nd

• Daniel Godwin, 28 of Georgetown – 3 Charges – Possession of Heroin, Conspiracy 2nd, Criminal Solicitation 2nd

• Angela Brown, 43 of Dover – 2 Charges – Delivery of Oxycodone, Conspiracy 2nd

• Sheri Chalfant, 52 of Laurel – 2 Charges – Delivery of Heroin, Conspiracy 2nd

• Domonique Johnson, 20 of Ellendale – 3 Charges – Possession of Heroin, Conspiracy 2nd, Criminal Solicitation 2nd

Arrest warrants have been obtained for the following individuals in connection with this investigation who have NOT been located

Rhamir D. Waples BMN 03-21-1996 – 81 Charges – Murder 1st Degree, Attempted Murder 1st Degree, Racketeering, Home Invasion, Robbery 1st Degree, Attempted Robbery 1st Degree, PFDCF, Conspiracy 2nd Degree, Reckless Endangering 1st Degree, Wearing a Disguise During the Commission of a Felony

Richard Robinson BMN 08-13-1994– 81 Charges – Murder 1st Degree, Attempted Murder 1st Degree, Racketeering, Home Invasion, Robbery 1st Degree, Attempted Robbery 1st Degree, PFDCF, Conspiracy 2nd Degree, Reckless Endangering 1st Degree, Wearing a Disguise During the Commission of a Felony

Shamir A. Stratton BMN 08-01-1990 – 22 Charges – Murder 1st Degree, Home Invasion, Robbery 1st Degree, Attempted Robbery 1st Degree, PFDCF, Conspiracy 1st Degree, Conspiracy 2nd Degree

Rachel R. Rentoul WFN 01-22-1985 – 13 Charges – Home Invasion, PFDCF, Robbery 1st Degree, Conspiracy 2nd Degree

Jacquelyn Heverin WFN 12-19-1990 – 13 Charges – Home Invasion, PFDCF, Robbery 1st Degree, Conspiracy 2nd Degree

Dean R. Zerden, 47 of Millsboro – 3 Charges – Possession of Cocaine, Criminal Solicitation 2nd, Conspiracy 2nd

Samuel J. Jones, 34 of Millsboro – 12 Charges – Tier 5 Possession of Cocaine, Tier 4 Delivery of Cocaine, Conspiracy 2nd , Criminal Solicitation 2nd

Thomas Tallent, 29 of Georgetown – 3 Charges – Possession of Heroin, Conspiracy 2nd, Criminal Solicitation 2nd

If anyone has any information in reference to the location of the listed wanted subjects, they are asked to contact Sgt. G. Windish at 302-752-3814. Information may also be provided by calling Delaware Crime Stoppers at 1-800-TIP-3333, via the internet at www.delaware.crimestoppersweb.com, or by sending an anonymous tip by text to 274637 (CRIMES) using the keyword “DSP.”

Below is a list of statements provided by agencies involved in the operation:

Delaware Department of Justice – Attorney General’s Office:

“This operation, and these arrests, are just more examples of the remarkable interagency cooperation in and around Delaware that helps protect the public,” said Attorney General Matt Denn. “This is another example of law enforcement agencies working together to take criminals off the street, this time in a major operation in Sussex County. Late last year, a similar effort broke up a major drug ring in New Castle County, and in January, the law enforcement community came together and netted more than a dozen arrests in taking down a Kent County drug operation. My sincere thanks goes out to the Delaware State Police, along with the Dover, Georgetown, and Philadelphia Police Departments, the Drug Enforcement Administration, U.S Marshalls, Department of Correction Probation and Parole, and the Sussex Correctional Institution. I also want to recognize Deputy Attorneys General Martin Cosgrove, Chris Hutchison, and Peggy Marshall for leading the DOJ efforts in this dogged investigation, and securing the indictment.”

Delaware State Police:

“This investigation targeted violent criminals and drug traffickers that were part of an organized criminal enterprise operating in Kent and Sussex County. This criminal enterprise was responsible for several serious violent crimes and the importation and distribution of heroin and cocaine throughout the State of Delaware,” said Colonel Nathaniel McQueen Jr., Superintendent of Delaware State Police. “The arrest of these suspects will have a significant impact and will go a long way to improve the quality of life in the affected communities. An investigation of this magnitude requires significant cooperation, communication, coordination and resources for all of those involved. This investigation continues to emphasize the impact and the benefit to our communities when all of our agencies are working together. Thank you to all of the Federal, State and local law enforcement agencies and The Department of Justice for their excellent teamwork and collaboration on this investigation. All of our agencies remain committed to working with our communities to reduce violent crime and drug trafficking throughout the State of Delaware.”


Permanent Anonymous Medicine Drop Boxes

PERMANENT ANONYMOUS MEDICINE DROP BOXES AVAILABLE IN EVERY COUNTY

DOVER – Medicines play an important role in treating health conditions and diseases, but they are open to abuse and improper disposal, which can harm the environment. The Division of Public Health (DPH) commends the eight local police departments who offer safe and secure medicine drug disposal at their offices. Offering secure, permanent drop boxes was a key recommendation of the Delaware Prescription Drug Task Force, a partnership between the state, Medical Society of Delaware, and community partners.

“Thank you to these eight police departments who have taken the lead on permanent, safe prescription drug disposal,” said DPH Director Dr. Karyl Rattay, co-chair of the PDAC task force. “Prescription drug abuse and misuse can lead to addiction, illegal substance use, and even an overdose. We must offer safe and anonymous avenues for medicine disposal.”

Additionally, it’s estimated that more than two-thirds of people who misuse prescription drugs get them from friends and family, who may be unaware that their unused medications have gone missing. And, drugs that are flushed down the toilet or otherwise improperly disposed of can contaminate groundwater. Medicine collection sites provide an opportunity for the public to drop off expired, unwanted, or unused prescription drugs and other medications to law enforcement for safe destruction.

Bring expired, unused, or unwanted medications to any of the locations listed below to ensure that they are disposed of properly. Drugs must be in a container such as a pill bottle, box, blister pack, or zip lock bag. Leave liquid medications in their original containers. No needles, aerosols, or biohazard materials may be deposited. Do not put medical equipment, batteries, syringes, or other biohazard waste into the drop-off boxes. The program is anonymous – no questions or requests for identification will be made by law enforcement personnel present.

“Being the first police department in Delaware to have permanent medicine collection drop-off boxes in the lobby of our police department ties into our commitment of being receptive to the needs of the communities that we serve and then doing something about it,” said Capt. Quinton Watson, New Castle County Police Department. “Having medicine drop-off boxes in different police departments around the state is a benefit for our citizens in order for them to safely dispose of their unwanted, expired, or unused prescription medication conveniently seven days a week, 24 hours a day. I would encourage more police departments to strongly consider placing a medicine collection box at their police departments to be a part of a great community effort to dispose of unwanted, expired, or unused prescription medication.”

Businesses such as medical clinics or pharmacies wishing to dispose of unwanted stock are not permitted to use these drop boxes. These DEA registrants must follow Federal Regulation 21CFR1307.21 for disposal of unwanted stock.

Permanent medication collection boxes are available at the locations listed below. Contact each site directly for collection hours, rules, and regulations.

New Castle County

Newark Police Department
220 S. Main St.
Newark, DE 19711
Phone: 302-366-7111

New Castle County Police Department
3601 N. DuPont Hwy
New Castle, DE 19720
Phone: 302-573-2800

Kent County

Camden Police Department
1783 Friends Way
Camden, DE 19934
302-697-2299

Dover Police Department
400 S. Queen St.
Dover, DE 19904
302-736-7111

Smyrna Police Department
325 W. Glenwood Ave.
Smyrna, DE 19977
Phone: 302-653-9217

Harrington Police Department
20 Mechanic St.
Harrington, DE 19952
Phone: 302-398-4493

Sussex County

Selbyville Police Department
68 W. Church St.
Selbyville, DE 19975
Phone: 302-436-5085.

Greenwood Police Department
100 W. Market St.
Greenwood, DE 19950
Phone: 302-349-4822

PDAC, chaired by Dr. Rattay and Dr. Randeep Kahlon, past president, Medical Society of Delaware, also called for the support of the PMP, increasing physician and pharmacist training, and an aggressive public outreach effort to reduce prescription drug abuse. The PDAC report is online at www.dhss.delaware.gov/dhss/dph/files/pdacfinalreport2013.pdf
Delaware Health and Social Services is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware’s citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations. DPH, a division of DHSS, urges Delawareans to make healthier choices with the 5-2-1 Almost None campaign: eat 5 or more fruits and vegetables each day, have no more than 2 hours of recreational screen time each day (includes TV, computer, gaming), get 1 or more hours of physical activity each day, drink almost no sugary beverages.

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Rita Landgraf, Secretary
Jill Fredel, Director of Communications
302-255-9047, Cell 302-357-7498
Email: jill.fredel@delaware.gov

Delaware Health and Social ServicesDivision of Public Health


Prosecution of Juveniles with Guns as Adults Highlights Recent DOJ Developments

WILMINGTON, DE – The Department of Justice’s continuing efforts to target serious juvenile gun offenses has led to the decision to hear the gun-related cases of three local teenagers in Superior Court. The Attorney General recently began personally reviewing each new juvenile gun offense, and has directed that some offenses which would previously have been handled as delinquency cases in Family Court be treated instead as adult cases due to their severity and/or the defendant’s history with the criminal justice system.

After prevailing in a Family Court hearing, the illegal gun possession case of 17-year-old John Brisco was transferred to New Castle County Superior Court. Brisco, on probation for a previous person prohibited for felony ammunition charge, was arrested in February, after a picture on one of his social media sites allegedly showed him with a gun. A probation officer found a loaded 9mm semi-automatic handgun in the bedroom of his Wilmington home. Deputy Attorney General Mark Denney successfully argued in Family Court for the case to be transferred to Superior Court and tried as an adult case.

The cases of two other juveniles will also be heard in Superior Court. Based on the nature of their charges, a 16-year-old and 15-year-old will both be tried as adults. The two were allegedly involved in the armed robberies of a convenience store and a donut shop in New Castle in April of this year. The Department of Justice is not releasing the identities of the juveniles pending indictment until the Superior Court agrees to try them as adults.

Trial success:

Deputy Attorneys General Periann Doko and Julie Finocchiaro secured a conviction against Curtis Finney, 21, of New Castle, in a jury trial. During a traffic stop in August 2013, police found two loaded handguns, and 378 bags of heroin in a car driven by Finney. Finney was convicted of multiple counts of drug dealing, possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, and possession of a firearm by a person prohibited. As a result, Finney will receive a minimum mandatory of 22 years in prison when sentenced later this year. Finney also received an 8-year prison sentence on his violation of probation in this case when prosecuted by Deputy Attorney General Mark Denney.

Deputy Attorney General John Taylor secured a conviction against 21-year-old Balisha White of New Castle in a jury trial, being found guilty of theft and resisting arrest. In August 2014, White broke into a home in the 2500 block of North Broom Street in Wilmington, stole items from the home, and then ran from police. White was immediately sentenced to a year in prison, suspended for a year’s probation on each count.

Deputy Attorney General Zachary Rosen secured a conviction against Howard Walsh, 50, of Wilmington. Walsh was found guilty on three counts of possession of a firearm by a person prohibited, one count of possession of ammunition by a person prohibited, one count of carrying a concealed dangerous instrument, and one count of criminal impersonation. In October 2014, police responded to Miller’s Gun Center in New Castle after receiving reports of a person with a gun wearing body armor. A woman purchased a gun and then gave it to Walsh, who then falsely told police he was a detective.

Deputy Attorney General Caroline Brittingham secured a conviction against Leroy Mitchell, 29, of Wilmington, for drug dealing and disregarding a police officer’s signal, related to a chase with the Laurel Police Department. Mitchell drove away from police during a traffic stop, then after crashing through a fence, fled on foot. When fleeing, he threw multiple logs of heroin that had been in a bag in his car.

Deputy Attorney General Kevin Gardner secured a guilty verdict against 56-year-old Stephen Shaw of Brookhaven, PA, for his third DUI offense. In March 2014, police found Shaw slumped over the steering wheel of his car in a parking lot in the 1200 block of Savannah Road in Lewes. Police noticed the smell of alcohol, and Shaw was unable to maintain his balance once getting out of the car. A subsequent blood draw showed his blood alcohol level to be .24.

Sentencing success:

Deputy Attorney General Lindsay Taylor secured a 7-year prison sentence for 27-year-old Stephen Hoffrage of Dover, for third degree rape. Hoffrage met his 15-year-old victim on a social messaging app, and raped her at her home in Smyrna. As a result of his conviction, Hoffrage is now registered as a Tier III sex offender.

Deputy Attorney General John Taylor secured a plea form Barry White, 39, of Wilmington, for possession of a firearm by a person prohibited, and two violations of probation: one for drug dealing, the other for first degree assault. During a traffic stop in November 2014, officers noticed the smell of marijuana, and White admitted to having marijuana with him. Police also found White had a gun. The court sentenced White to 15 years suspended after 10 on the gun charge, 6 years suspended after 3 years on the assault, and re-imposed probation for the drug dealing.

Deputy Attorney General Jamie McCloskey secured a plea from 29-year-old Ralph Nock for home invasion and first degree robbery. In September 2014, Nock robbed two people at knife-point inside a home in the 100 block of Cross Avenue in New Castle. Nock was immediately sentenced to nine years in prison.

Deputy Attorney General Jamie McCloskey secured a plea from Scott Newcomer, 28, of New Castle, for second degree burglary and felony theft. In November 2014, Newcomer climbed through the window of a house in the unit block of Scottie Lane in New Castle, ransacked the house, and stole several items. Upon entering his plea, Newcomer was immediately to three years in prison.

Deputy Attorney General Timothy Maguire secured a plea from David Griffin, for a fourth DUI. Griffin was sentenced to 5 years in prison, suspended after nine months for one year supervised probation, as well as a $3,000 fine, the Statutory DUI Course/loss of license and Transdermal Alcohol Monitoring. In December 2014, Griffin was involved in a hit and run accident. He was also ordered to pay restitution.

Resolution success:

Deputy Attorney General Eric Zubrow secured guilty pleas for two counts of second degree conspiracy, and one count of criminal solicitation from Richard Ray, 27, of Wilmington. While in prison, Ray convinced his brother to commit a robbery in hopes of getting enough money for bail. He was also rearrested during his brother’s trial for witness intimidation, resulting in the second conspiracy charge.

Deputy Attorney General John Taylor secured a guilty pleas from Jamaal Dearry, 29, of Bear, for drug dealing, possession of a firearm by a person prohibited, and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony. While executing a search warrant in November 2014, the Special Operations Response Team (S.O.R.T.) found drugs in an apartment on Brookside Boulevard in Newark, where Dearry was with three other people. He is facing fifteen years minimum mandatory prison time.


Attorney General Denn Urges Oil Companies to Eliminate Synthetic Drug Sales At Gas Stations

Attorney General Matt Denn recently joined with 42 of his counterparts in asking the CEOs of nine oil companies to eliminate any synthetic drug sales from retail locations operating under their brand names.

Synthetic drugs started appearing in gas stations, tobacco shops and liquor stores over the last seven years. In 2010, more than 11,000 people nationally – many of whom were younger than 17 – went to the emergency room after using synthetic marijuana, and in 2011 the number was more than 28,000.

“The impact and dangerousness of synthetic drugs has become clear in Delaware. In 2011, a man high on the synthetic drug known as bath salts killed New Castle County Police Lt. Joseph Szczerba,” Attorney General Denn said. “Delaware lawmakers passed legislation making bath salts illegal following that incident, but new varieties of synthetic drugs continue to be created, and none of them should be available at stores in Delaware or anywhere.”

The contents and effects of synthetic drugs are unpredictable due to a changing variety of chemicals used in manufacturing processes that are devoid of quality controls and regulatory oversight.
The letter asks company officials to prohibit franchisees from selling any synthetic drugs, revoke the franchisee/franchisor relationship with any gas station or convenience store that sells any kind of synthetic drug, and report to local law enforcement if they learn that any franchisee is selling synthetic drugs.

Companies receiving the letter with the request from the state Attorneys General included BP, Phillips 66, Chevron, Shell, Citgo, Sunoco, Exxon Mobil, Valero, and Marathon Petroleum.

The state and territorial Attorneys General offices that signed the letter are: Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Northern Mariana Islands, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.


Nine New Drug Recognition Experts Combat DUI in Delaware

Dover– Last month, nine Delaware law enforcement officers from state and local police departments completed an intensive training course to become certified Drug Recognition Experts (DRE). A DRE is a police officer trained to recognize impairment in drivers under the influence of drugs other than, or in addition to, alcohol. The DRE officer may be called to a DUI stop if a driver has failed the standardized field sobriety tests but the driver does not have a measurable breath alcohol concentration. The DRE can perform a battery of tests to determine if other drugs may be causing the impairment. All DRE officers can work statewide and can be called out to any DUI stop if needed.

The nine new DRE officers are:

Cpl. Adam Mease, Newark PD

Cpl. Dana Wyant, Rehoboth Beach PD

MPO Patrick McCloskey, UDPD

Cpl. Jonathan Gibbons, DSP Troop 2

Cpl. Patrick Wenk, DSP Troop 2

Cpl. Michael Weinstein, DSP Troop 3

Cpl. Andrew Partyka, DSP Troop 4

Cpl. Nicholas Demalto, DSP Troop 7

Cpl. Roland Mills, DSP Troop 7

They join three existing Delaware DREs:  Sgt. Andrew Rubin, Newark PD; Sgt. Joseph Parker, DSP Troop 2; and MCpl. Roy Bryant, DSP Troop 3.

The DRE training process requires nearly 100 hours of classroom and field training. An officer must complete the Standardized Field Sobriety Testing (SFST) course and have SFST field experience before they can apply to the DRE program. Once an officer has been accepted into the DRE program, they must successfully complete four steps in order to become DRE certified.

  • Attend a 2 day intensive DRE pre-school to evaluate their ability. Successful candidates will go to on to the 7 day DRE school.
  • Complete a 7 day classroom training DRE school. Officers must score at least 80% to continue with the program.
  • Complete field certification process. If the officer was successful in the 7 day DRE school, they move to the field certification process. Each candidate must evaluate 12 subjects who are under the influence of something other than alcohol.  They also must identify at least three of the seven drug categories.  Each opinion rendered must be confirmed through toxicology.
  • Score 100% on final exam. The final exam is administered over the course of 12-18 hours and a score 100% is required to graduate and become a certified DRE officer.

The Delaware Office of Highway Safety coordinates the DRE program in Delaware and makes it available to all law enforcement statewide. For officers to maintain their DRE certification they must receive continuing education every two years, and they must conduct a minimum number of evaluations, 4 of which must be observed by a DRE instructor.

There are currently more than 6,300 active DREs in the United States.  There are also more than 500 in Canada.  Other countries are also starting to train DREs, including China – 2, Australia – 1, Germany – 1, and the Virgin Islands – 1.

The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) originated the program in the early 1970s, when it was noted many of the individuals arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) had very low/zero alcohol concentrations, indicating they were under the influence of drugs. Two LAPD sergeants collaborated with medical doctors, research psychologists, and other medical professionals to develop a standardized procedure for recognizing drug influence and impairment. Their efforts culminated in the development of a multi-step protocol and the first DRE program. The LAPD formally recognized the program in 1979 and attracted NHTSA’s attention. The two agencies developed a standardized DRE protocol. Studies have proven a properly trained DRE can successfully identify drug impairment and accurately determine the category of drugs causing such impairment.

The International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) coordinates the International Drug Evaluation and Classification (DEC) Program with support from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). More information about the DRE program can be found at http://www.decp.org/.