Former Chauncey Police Chief Identified As Part Of Drug Ring

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The former Chauncey police chief and village marshal that was arrested on drug charges has been indicted for his alleged involvement in a Glouster drug ring.

Charles “Chuck” Wachenschwanz, 46, was indicted as one of the individuals who allegedly took part in a drug trafficking ring reportedly led by Derek Gyure, according to Athens County Prosecutor Keller Blackburn.

He was indicted by an Athens County grand jury on charges of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, illegal cultivation of marijuana, endangering children, possessing criminal tools, having weapons while under disability, possessing a defaced firearm (the serial number had been scratched off the weapon) and petty theft.

Wachenschwanz, who served with the Chauncey Police Department until he was suspended and removed in 2001, was arrested July 2 after a “clandestine marijuana growing operation” was found inside a residence on Kempton Drive in Chauncey.

More than 5,000 grams of marijuana were found in the residence and a juvenile child was also present in the home, according to the criminal complaint.

The man was not arrested with the initial group allegedly involved in the drug ring because his involvement was discovered after further investigations in the case, Blackburn said.

“This is far from over,” Blackburn said in a news release Thursday. “Law enforcement will continue to seek out all who have been involved in this criminal enterprise.”

Wachenschwanz was scheduled to appear in Athens County Municipal Court on Thursday for a preliminary hearing, but his case was dismissed before the hearing began. He remains incarcerated at the Southeastern Ohio Regional Jail.

Wachenschwanz’s wife, Patsy, 50, was also indicted as part of the grand jury proceedings. She is charged with one count of endangering children.

The child involved was returned to the custody of family members, Blackburn said.