Clermont County Sheriff Robert S. Leahy reports a Miami Township woman has been indicted by the Clermont County Grand Jury for 3 counts related to her involvement in the trafficking of crystal methamphetamine.
Diane Unser, age 47 has been indicted on 1 count of aggravated trafficking in drugs, a second degree felony, 1 count of aggravated possession of drugs, a second degree felony and 1 count of tampering with evidence, a third degree felony.
On February 22, 2017, The Clermont County Narcotics Task Force launched an investigation following a fatal overdose, occurring at Ms. Unser’s residence in the 5700 block of Hilltop Way Miami Township. During the investigation, agents learned of Ms. Unser’s intention to travel to Dayton, Ohio to purchase crystal methamphetamine.
On March 10, 2017, Ms. Unser was stopped by a Clermont County deputy as she returned from Dayton. Agents suspected Unser of concealing methamphetamine in her body cavity. A subsequent search warrant resulted in the recovery of 26.5 grams of crystal methamphetamine from Unser, which she intended for distribution. Additionally, $838.00 in US currency was recovered from Unser’s vehicle. The Clermont County Narcotics Unit was assisted during this investigation by the Loveland Police Department and the Miami Township Police Department.
Estimated street value of the crystal methamphetamine seized: $2,650.00
Unser is currently being held in the Clermont County Jail on a $75,000 bond. She is scheduled to appear for an arraignment in Clermont County Court at 10:00 AM on 3/22/17. This investigation into the trafficking of methamphetamine is ongoing.
Diane Unser age 47
On Thursday 3/9/17, three residents of a local hotel were indicted by the Clermont County Grand Jury on 38 counts related to their involvement in drug trafficking.
Michelle Allen, age 45, has been indicted on 2 counts of trafficking in heroin, one second degree felony and one fifth degree felony; 5 counts of aggravated trafficking in drugs, 1 third degree felony and 4 fifth degree felonies, 2 count of aggravated possession of drugs, felonies of the third degree.
Dominique Simpson, age 24, has been indicted on 2 counts of possession of heroin a fifth degree felony, 2 counts of possession of cocaine, 1 felony of the third degree and 1 felony of the fifth degree, 2 counts of aggravated possession of drugs, both felonies of the fifth degree.
Paris Johnson, age 26, has been indicted on 5counts of possession of heroin a felony of the fifth degree, 3 counts of aggravated possession of drugs, all felonies of the fifth degree, and 1count of possession of cocaine a felony of the third degree.
On February 28, 2017, the Clermont County Narcotics Task Force, which is comprised of Sheriff’s Deputies, Union Twp. Miami Twp. and Pierce Twp police departments, finalized a month long investigation which identified Allen, Simpson and Johnson as traffickers in narcotics. The group trafficked the narcotics from their room in the Days Inn Hotel located in the 4000 block of Mt. Carmel Tabasco Rd. in Union Township. Narcotics agents executed a search warrant on the room the group occupied at the Days Inn Hotel, at which time agents seized 22 grams of heroin, 12 grams of crack cocaine, a small amount of marijuana and a 9mm handgun.
Estimated street value of heroin seized: $2,600.00, the estimated value of crack cocaine was $900.00.
Allen and Johnson are currently being held in the Clermont County Jail, and will appear in Clermont County Common Pleas Court on 3-10-17 at 8:30am for their arraignments.
Dominique Simpson remains at large. Anyone with information as to his location is encouraged to contact the Clermont County Sheriff’s Office at 513-732-7510.
Michelle Allen 45
Paris Johnson 26
Paul Miller, age 45, has been indicted on 1 count of Trafficking in Marijuana, a second degree felony; 1 count of Possession of Marijuana, a second degree felony, 1 count of Engaging in a Pattern of Corrupt Activity, a first degree felony, and 3 counts of Aggravated Possession of Drugs, all felonies of the fourth degree.
On December 8th, 2016, the Clermont County Narcotics Task Force finalized a three month long investigation which identified Miller as a major supplier of marijuana to Clermont County as well as numerous states throughout the country. Narcotics agents executed search warrants at Miller’s residence in Pierce Twp., as well as two storage facilities in Union Twp. Agents seized 60 pounds of marijuana which Miller intended for distribution. Additionally, agents seized $56,961.00 in US currency.
Estimated street value of marijuana seized: $240,000.00
Miller appeared for arraignment at 8:30am on 2/10/17 in a Clermont County Common Pleas Court, where his bond was set at $200,000.00. Miller is currently being held in the Clermont County Jail, and will return to court on 2/13/17 at 8:30am for a bond review. This investigation is ongoing with additional arrests of co-conspirators anticipated. Sheriff Leahy commented “I am extremely proud of the exceptional networking our Narcotics Task Force displayed during this investigation which involved communities and jurisdictions on the west coast.”
On Wednesday 2/8/17 at 2:50 a.m. the Clermont County Communication Center received a 911 call in reference to an Aggravated Robbery that occurred at the UDF store, 2200 Winemiller Ln., Batavia Twp. Clermont County. Sheriff’s Patrol units responded and discovered that a male subject entered the store wearing gym shorts, a tan jacket and a black baseball cap and ordered cigarettes. The store clerk produced the items that the male ordered and advised him of the purchase price, $8.97. The male answered the store clerk by stating that he had a loaded gun and the items were free. The male turned and left the store with the items. The male subject entered a vehicle that was parked in front of the store and left the lot. The clerk was able to obtain a description of the vehicle which included the license plate. There was no firearm displayed during the incident. The clerks was not injured and there were no customers inside of the store at the time of the robbery.
Detectives from the Sheriff’s Office responded to the scene and Road Patrol Units began searching for the registered owner of the vehicle, which lead them to a residence located in the 3800 block of Fulton Grove in Pierce Twp. It was discovered that Fire Department personnel from Union Twp. were called to this residence for a structure fire, shortly before the robbery occurred. The registered owner of the vehicle was not present at the residence.
At 3:22 a.m., the Brown County Sheriff’s Office was dispatched to a residence on Upper Cumberland Rd., which runs off of Old SR 32 in Brown County for a vehicle in a ditch. Deputies from Brown County made contact with the vehicle which matched the description of the vehicle used in the robbery. The male driver was identified as David J. Sons M/W/32, who resides at the address on Fulton Grove where the structure fire occurred. Sons matched the physical description, provided by the clerk on the scene of the robbery and Brown County deputies recovered a handgun on Sons person. Sons was transported to the Mercy Hospital Clermont due to statements he made to Brown County deputies about harming himself. Detectives from the Clermont County Sheriff’s Office responded to Mercy Hospital and interviewed Sons who confessed to the robbery and purposefully setting fire to his residence in Pierce Twp. Sons was arrested and charged with one count of Aggravated Robbery, a felony of the first degree.
David Sons is being held in the Clermont County Jail without bond. Sons will appear in Clermont County Municipal Court on Thursday 2/9/17 at 10 a.m. for his bond hearings. Detectives from the Sheriff’s Office are working with the Pierce Twp. Police Department and will be presenting this case along with additional charges to the Clermont County Prosecutor’s Office for presentation to the Grand Jury.
David J. Sons M/W/32
Clermont County Sheriff’s Office joins Nextdoor.com
Starting today, I am pleased to announce that the Clermont County Sheriff’s Office will be utilizing nextdoor.com to help make our neighborhoods stronger and safer. Nextdoor.com is the private social network whose mission is to provide a trusted platform where neighbors work together to build stronger, safer, happier communities. It is an easy way for you and your neighbors to connect online, and it’s free. The Clermont County Sheriff’s Office plans to share important news and emergency notifications that are relevant to your neighborhood. Please be assured that your Nextdoor website remains private. Our staff will not be able to see any of the content on your neighborhood website except for the direct replies to our posts. We look forward to communicating with you and with the 8000 Clermont County Residents currently communicating on Nextdoor.
People are currently using Nextdoor for a variety of reasons to include the following:
Quickly get the word out about a break-in
Organize a Neighborhood Watch Group
Track down a trustworthy babysitter
Find out who does the best paint job in town
Ask for help keeping an eye out for a lost dog
Find a new home for an outgrown bike
To learn more about Nextdoor, please go to the blow link.
Saturday, November 5, 2005
By Kevin Osborne
Enquirer staff writer
AMELIA – Tina Scro knew her husband’s cooking of ingredients to make methamphetamine in the kitchen of their apartment involved toxic fumes and was potentially explosive.
But she said she was always too wired on the potent drug to care about the risk to their three small children.
When police knocked on the couple’s door one day last year, one ordeal for Tina Scro ended and another began.
She lost custody of her children and went to jail.
“I was shocked and scared, but I was also relieved,” she said. “It had gotten bad. It got to the point where I would be up for days at a time and then sleep for days, and my daughter would have to take care of my sons.”
Months later, after she served 5½ months in jail and another five in a treatment center — and with her husband still in prison on drug charges — Scro, 33, has regained custody, a rarity among parents convicted on meth-related charges.
More children are being removed from their homes and placed in protective custody each year because of the increasing use of meth in rural counties. The children often are shuffled among foster homes and case workers.
The worsening situation forced Clermont County to ask voters for more money next week to handle the influx of children.
Issue 6 on the Tuesday election ballot is a five-year tax levy for Clermont County Children’s Protective Services. It would replace a smaller assessment that expires next year.
The levy would generate about $4.5 million annually for the agency, compared to $3 million raised each year by the current tax issue.
Taxes on a $100,000 house would jump about $11 a year.
The increase is the first sought by officials since the levy began nearly 20 years ago, and is mostly because of the problems caused by illegal drug use, especially methamphetamine use.
“Meth labs are a huge issue for us,” said Anne Arbaugh, the agency’s assistant director. “Fortunately, our sheriff is very proactive in finding and busting meth labs. But those children need to go somewhere, and generally they end up coming into our system.”
The agency investigates allegations of abuse or neglect. It provides temporary foster care for children and offers case worker services to aid troubled families.
Children’s Protective Services had 214 children in custody in January 2003, a number that has increased 50 percent. About 320 children are now under the agency’s care. Of that number, 45 were in custody directly because of meth lab busts, a figure that is growing.
The agency spends about $990,000 annually on services for children in custody because of meth busts, about 15 percent of its child placement budget.
“That’s going to increase because most of them aren’t able to go home, and we get more every year,” Arbaugh said.
Overall, more than 80 percent of the children under the agency’s care are taken from homes where the parents have drug- or alcoholproblems. Last year, 19 infants were taken into custody at birth because of their mothers’ drug use.
A problem on the West Coast for years, meth use and production has spread to America’s heartland, gaining a foothold in rural and suburban areas.
In Clermont County, the sheriff’s office shut down 26 meth labs in 2001. By 2003, that number increased to 40. So far this year, 35 have been detected and closed.
In Hamilton County, the prosecutor’s office had eight meth-related indictments in 2002. The number jumped to 11 the following year, and to 20 in 2004. The county is on pace to exceed that figure this year, a spokeswoman said.
The problem is worse in Warren County, which has more rural areas. Officials there busted two meth labs in 2000. In 2004, they closed nine labs. So far this year, they have busted 23 labs and issued 35 indictments.
“It’s on the rise because it’s cheap,” said Warren County Prosecutor Rachel Hutzel. “That’s why it’s called ‘poor man’s heroin.’ You can collect everything and make it in your neighborhood. You don’t need to go to a drug dealer.”
In fact, Clermont ranks second among Ohio’s 88 counties for meth lab busts, followed by Warren.
(Butler County doesn’t keep meth-related busts and indictments separate from other drug offenses, a prosecutor’s spokeswoman said.)
Manufacturing meth in makeshift laboratories is dangerous. The ingredients can be highly flammable when mixed and create a foul odor.
“It stinks when you cook it and it produces a lot of waste product,” Hutzel said. “It’s easier to conceal that in a rural county.”
There are telltale signs of covert meth-making, officials said.
In one instance, Arbaugh and her case workers toured a meth lab in a shed behind a mobile home where children had been removed.
“They had no running water, no food, no heat and the house was filthy. We walked into their back bedroom and it had surveillance equipment like you wouldn’t believe. Then, we went into the shed and it had more,” she said.
Cans of paint were scattered about and stripes were painted randomly on the shed’s floor: “The smell of the paint masks the smell of the toxic chemicals,” she said.
Children taken from homes where meth is produced typically require more services, Arbaugh said.
First, they must be taken to hospitals for testing. Their clothes and toys frequently must be discarded because of possible contamination. Given how powerful the drug is, many addicts don’t stop using, meaning the children stay in custody longer.
Ohio lawmakers recently changed the law to allow people arrested for producing meth in the presence of kids to be charged with child endangering, a third-degree felony that can add another five years to a prison sentence.
Tina Scro’s case is unusual, Arbaugh said, because many meth addicts give up on reuniting with their children.
Upon conviction, Scro spent nearly a year in jail and the treatment facility. Her husband was sentenced to three years in prison, and the couple is divorcing. Their daughter and two sons spent more than a year in foster care.
Upon her release in November, she stayed at a shelter in Batavia while she looked for housing and work. Her drug conviction meant she no longer was eligible for federal housing assistance, and many apartment complexes wouldn’t accept someone with a drug record.
Initially, Scro was allowed supervised visits with the children for two hours each week, which progressed to unsupervised visits once she got a car. In August, she regained custody of the kids, but still must check in with her probation officer and a case worker.
After finding work at a factory, she settled into an apartment in Amelia with her kids. Her daughter, now age 6, is in kindergarten; her sons, ages 3 and 4, attend day care while she works.
Despite the stress of rebuilding relationships with her children and trying to make a living, Scro isn’t tempted to revive her meth habit.
“After this last time, I’m just done,” she said. “It’s not because of the trouble. I got three kids that need me, and when I stop to think about what I put them through and what could’ve happened, it’s more real. I’m just done with it.”
Use and production of methamphetamine is a major cause of child abuse and neglect, say law enforcement officials and child welfare agencies. Two recent nationwide surveys that compiled results from 500 counties in 45 states found:
40% of counties reported an increase in out-of-home placements for children.
59% reported that the nature of meth addiction has made family reunification more difficult.
69% reported having to develop additional training and special protocols for welfare workers who deal with children exposed to meth.
Source: National Association. of Counties
Street meth is commonly known by the nicknames “speed” and “chalk.” A common offshoot, methamphetamine hydrochloride, is crystalline and often called “crystal,” “ice” or “glass” because of its appearance.
The drug can be smoked, snorted or injected intravenously. Depending on the dosage, the effects can last up to a few days at a time.
Studies have shown that prolonged use can cause heart failure, brain damage, stroke and psychological disturbances including paranoia and hallucinations.
For each pound of meth produced, 5 to 7 pounds of toxic by-products remain that must be disposed of.
The Clermont County Narcotics Unit and the Drug Abuse Resistance Task Force (DART – Hamilton County) conducted a joint investigation into the manufacturing and distribution of significant amounts of Psilocybin Mushrooms throughout Southwestern Ohio.
During the investigation, Agents became aware of a Clandestine Psilocybin Laboratory in Clermont County and that the substance was about to be relocated for the purpose of distribution.
On 08-23-2013, Agents from the Clermont County Narcotics Unit and the Drug Abuse Resistance Task Force executed a search warrant at 1317 Nicholas Drive in Miami Township Clermont County. As a result of the search warrant, Agents seized a sophisticated clandestine Psilocybin Mushroom laboratory. Inside the laboratory, agents recovered 503 pounds of materials containing Psilocybin, a hallucinogenic which is classified as a Schedule 1 Controlled Substance. The seized Psilocybin has a street value of $805,000.
Aaron Gasper, age 26, was arrested and incarcerated at the Clermont County Jail. Gasper was charged with one count of Illegal Manufacture of Drugs which is a Felony of the first degree. Additional charges and suspects will be submitted to the Clermont County Grand Jury at a later date. This is the largest seizure of Psilocybin in Clermont County.