Perry County Sheriff William Barker says seven area residents are facing charges in connection with a prescription drug trafficking ring. The Sheriff says the investigation that took place in the Spring of 2011 resulted in the indictments of 29-year-old Shawn Hale of Roseville, 30-year-old Crystal McCray with four counts of permitting drugs abuse, also of Roseville. 66-year-old Russell Hale of New Lexington, 47-year-old Wendy Bailey of Somerset, 30-year-old Melissa Howell, 45-year-old Regina Houston and 27-year-old Christopher Hale, all of New Lexington. Sheriff Barker says group is facing charges that range from aggravated trafficking in Drugs with juvenile specifications, to permitting drug abuse and deception to obtain drugs. The Sheriff says with the help of the Central Ohio Drug Enforcement Task Force and Agents with the Ohio State Board of Pharmacy they determined some of the people charged played a role by visiting multiple doctors to order to obtain prescription drugs which were then sold. The case remains under investigation and more people could be charged.
More Details On Case From Perry County Sheriff William Barker:
During the Spring of 2011, narcotics detectives with the Central Ohio Drug Enforcement Task Force and Agents with the Ohio State Board of Pharmacy conducted an investigation regarding the illegal sales of prescription drugs by Shawn Michael Hale. Through their investigation, investigators identified that Shawn Hale was being supplied prescription drugs that he was selling from his father, Russell Hale. Russell Hale was found to be visiting multiple doctors around the State of Ohio and being prescribed prescription drugs that were subsequently being provided to his son, Shawn. Russell Hale’s activities are what investigators call “doctor shopping”, a method of visiting multiple doctors and deceiving the physicians in order to obtain prescription drugs. Shawn Hale was conducting these prescription drug sales from his home which he shared with his girlfriend, Crystal McCray and their two (2) minor children.
As the investigation progressed, investigators found that Shawn Hale was also being supplied prescription drugs from Melissa Howell and Wendy Bailey in which he subsequently sold as well. Howell and Bailey were assisted by Regina Houston who provided transportation that facilitated the drug trafficking efforts of Howell and Bailey. Investigators also identified Christopher Brandon Hale as a suspect who was also visiting multiple doctors and deceiving them to obtain prescription drugs. Christopher Hale is the son to Russell Hale and the brother to Shawn Hale.
The case remains under investigation and further persons may be charged as a result.