16 charged in Boyle drug round up

In December, Boyle County Sheriff Derek Robbins put a message on Facebook to any heroin dealers in the community — “We are coming for you.” 

On Thursday, the sheriff’s office joined forces with the Danville Police Department to lead a day-long operation, rounding up 16 people linked to trafficking drugs.

“We made a significant impact today,” Robbins said late Thursday. “We got the main players that we wanted to get.”

Robbins said they tried to arrest people they considered more important earlier in the day, because as word spread, it would get harder to catch people. 

“People will go into hiding,” he said. 

At the end of the day, Robbins said law enforcement had confiscated about 300 dosage units of heroin and fentanyl — about 30 grams — along with a 9 mm handgun.

Fentanyl is a potent drug many times more powerful than heroin. It has been blamed for causing overdose deaths around Kentucky in recent months.

“We got a significant amount of dope,” Robbins said. “It was a good coordinated effort … we were all working together.”

Danville Police Chief Tony Gray said a lot of the credit was due the sheriff’s office, which had done “a lot of the heavy lifting.” 

Gray said the two agencies had been coordinating and planning for the joint round-up for several weeks. 

“We wanted to be more organized,” Robbins said.

While three deaths apparently from drug overdoses that occurred earlier in the week didn’t spark the effort, they did “expedite the process,” he said.

Three people died on Tuesday from suspected drug overdoses but Boyle County Coroner Don Hamner is waiting on toxicology reports to confirm causes of death.

According to information from Hamner, a 42-year-old Junction City man died at 6:40 a.m.; a 33-year-old Danville man died at 6:55 p.m.; and a 35-year-old Danville man died at 10:30 p.m. on Tuesday.

According to information posted on the sheriff’s Facebook page, each of the following individuals arrested were accused of selling drugs to undercover law enforcement officers.

Some of those facing charges from Thursday’s busts were already in jail on previous charges. New charges, according to records from the Boyle County Detention Center website, were:

• Justin Allen, 25: first-degree trafficking in synthetic drugs.

• Melina Bailey, 49: first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance (less than two grams of fentanyl).

• Trent Calhoun, 28: first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance (less than two grams of methamphetamine).

• Ruben Clark, 34: first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance (less than two grams of fentanyl).

• Quinterious Collins, 22: first-degree trafficking in synthetic drugs.

• Chris Devine, 32: first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance (less than two grams of heroin).

• John Ganem, 22: first-degree possession of a controlled substance (methamphetamine); and first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance (less than two grams of fentanyl).

• Charles Goode, 31: first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance (less than two grams methamphetamine).

• Dexter Grey, 31: first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance (less than two grams of heroin).

• Elizabeth Leavell, 35: trafficking in synthetic marijuana; and “any felony charge not covered by these codes.”

• Brandon Lofton, 28: first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance (more than or equal to two grams of fentanyl); possession of drug paraphernalia; and trafficking within 1,000 feet of a school.

• Franklin Peake, 39: first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance (less than two grams of fentanyl).

• Rhonda Penman, 43: first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance (less than two grams fentanyl); and first-degree possession of a controlled substance (methamphetamine).

• Robin Penman, 36: first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance (less than two grams of fentanyl).

• Cassandra “Cassie” Stevens, 32: first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance (less than two grams of methamphetamine).

• Matthew Underwood, 29: first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance (less than two grams methamphetamine).

• Derrick Weigel, 25: first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance (less than two grams of fentanyl).

Follow Kendra Peek on Twitter, @knpeek.