Updated Wed, May 14, 2014 11:55 am
Update 6:00 p.m. Three individuals facing not only drug charges but racketeering charges were arraigned in Athens County Common Pleas Court on Tuesday.
Bert C. Sharrer, 45, of Jacksonville, Bert Sharrer, Jr., 18, of McConnelsville and Kendra Rania Sharrer, 22, of Glouster all entered pleas of innocent to various felony drug charges as well as the first-degree felony of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity.
All three were part of what Athens County law enforcement are calling the largest prescription drug ring in the county.
Derek Gyure, 26, John Casey Metcalf, 22, both of Glouster, Billy Joe Haynes, 25, of Athens, Tinkey Rutter, 37, of Chauncey and Ryan Rutherford, 36, of Nelsonville, were all charged in connection with the alleged drug ring as well. Gyure was named as the top man in the ring, and the supplier of the drugs for multiple dealers in the county, according to Athens County Prosecutor Keller Blackburn.
The drug bust was announced Monday at a news conference.
Bert C. Sharrer is also charged with two counts of aggravated trafficking in drugs and his bond was set at $1 million. A jury trial was scheduled for July 15.
Bert Sharrer, Jr., was additionally charged with aggravated trafficking in drugs. His bond was set at $800,000 and a jury trial was scheduled for July 15.
Kendra Sharrer was also charged with aggravated possession of drugs and tampering with evidence. She received a bond of $800,000 with a jury trial also slated for July 15.
The Athens County Prosecutor’s Office along with the Athens County Sheriff’s Office, the Athens Police Department, Ohio University Police Department and members from Hocking-Fairfield Drug Task Force announced the arrests of nine individuals.
Five people, Kendra Sharrer, 22, of Glouster; Tinkey Rutter, 37, of Chauncey; Bert Sharrer Jr., 18, of McConnelsville; Bert C. Sharrer, 45, of Jacksonville; Ryan Rutherford, 36, of Nelsonville, were arrested on Monday 12 and indicted on racketeering charges for drug conspiracy.
Derek Gyure, 26, Glouster; John Casey Metcalf, 22, of Glouster; Billy Joe Haynes, 25, of Athens were arrested on various felony drug charges in the past week. The Athens County Sheriff's office has not released the name of the ninth person arrested.
The arrests came through a joint operation with the law enforcement agency to "shut down an area drug ring that extends from Athens County through Columbus to the Detroit area," Interim Sheriff Rodney Smith said.
Gyure was arrested on May 6 and charged with several offenses in what is being called the biggest oxycodone bust in the county. "Our narcotics officer said that was the biggest pill bust that he can remember in his recent memory," Rodney said.
Gyure, Metcalf and all three Sharrers were charged with engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, a first degree felony.
Three of those arrested and indicted appeared in Athens Municipal Court in early May on the felony charges. Gyure was placed on a $750,000 bond, Metcalf is being held on $200,000 bond and Kendra Sharrer was placed on a $50,000 cash/surety bond after appearing in municipal court.
Gyure was armed with a .40-caliber Glock handgun at the time of his arrest and was seen tossing a green ammunition box into the brush, according to a joint news release from the prosecutor’s office, the Athens County Sheriff’s Office, the Athens Police Department and the Ohio University Police Department.
In the box, law enforcement allegedly found the 1,400 tablets suspected to be oxycodone, in 30-milligram pills. The box also had $17,000 in cash, according to the release.
"Mr. Gyure is the top of the pyramid in Athens County based on the arrestes we had today and the information provided he was supplying pills to multiple dealers," Blackburn said.
After being arrested, Gyure was charged with the corrupt activity charge along with five counts of aggravated trafficking and one count each of aggravated possession, tampering with evidence, having weapons under disability and possession of criminal tools.
Metcalf faces four counts of aggravated trafficking and one count each of possession of marijuana, having weapons under disability, possessing criminal tools and engaging in corrupt activity.
Haynes is charged with two counts of trafficking in cocaine and one count of aggravated trafficking.
Kendra Sharrer is accused of one count each of aggravated possession of drugs, tampering with evidence and engaging in corrupt activity.
Rutter faces one county of possession of heroin, while Rutherford faces one count of aggravated possession of drugs.
Bert C. Sharrer was arrested on two counts of aggravated trafficking and one count of engaging in corrupt activity. Bert Sharrer, Jr., will face one count of aggravated trafficking and one count of engaging in corrupt activity.
Blackburn said the operation was made possible thanks to the help of an undercover informant.