Undercover effort leads to drug arrests

Published 10:37 am Friday, November 7, 2008

More than a half a dozen people have been arrested this week as a result of secret drug indictments handed down late last week by a Lawrence County grand jury.

The drug charges involve the sale of heroin, Oxycontin and marijuana, as well as other drugs.

Mark A. Eubank, 26, of 2417 S. Fifth St., Ironton, Paul F. Anderson, 25, of 275 N. Third St., Ironton, Nickie Lyons, 19, and her husband, Timothy Lyons, 27, both of 721 Vine St., Ironton, and Jeremy M. Grizzle, 27, of 601 Hecla St., Ironton, were all arrested Thursday by members of the Lawrence County Drug Task Force. Eubank is charged with multiple counts of aggravated trafficking in heroin, as is Anderson. Timothy Lyons is charged with trafficking in Oxycodone while Nickie Lyons is charged with complicity to trafficking in drugs. Grizzle is charged with three counts of trafficking in Oxycodone and one count of trafficking in heroin.

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While arrests for peddling crack cocaine, pills and marijuana have been commonplace in recent years, heroin is not something authorities here have had to contend with.

“Within the last year it’s made a comeback,” Lawrence County Sheriff’s Office Detective Aaron Bollinger said. “It is a serious problem for some of the larger cities, such as Columbus and Detroit. The city of Huntington has been plagued with it and in the last year or so has had several heroin-related deaths. We have been fortunate our county has not had the problems other cities such as Huntington have had.”

Dean Montroso, 37, whose last known address was 1453 County Road 1, South Point, was arrested Wednesday on an indictment for trafficking in heroin as well as warrants for burglary and failure to appear for a court hearing in Lawrence County Municipal Court.

The arrests are the result of a months-long undercover investigation into drug peddling in the area.

“With each of these individuals, we have had numerous complaints about their drug activity,” Bollinger said. “Quite often people call and complain that their tips are not being acted on. But investigations take time and eventually, people will be arrested.

On Monday, three people were arrested for trafficking in prescription medication. James Brooks, 62, of 2316 Geswein St., Ironton, Jana Turley, 26, of 303 1/2 Depot St., Coal Grove, and Samuel Alexander, 41, of 2525 S. Third St., Ironton, were also indicted during the recent session of the Lawrence County grand jury.

According to information from Lawrence County Sheriff Tim Sexton, authorities confiscated more than 400 Oxycontin pills and more than 10 Xanax pills. These drugs have an estimated street value of more than $12,000.

“We believe there is a somewhat organized effort from some drug traffickers traveling to Florida pain clinics to obtain pain pills illegally and bring them back to our Tri-state for street sale,” Sheriff Tim Sexton said. All of those arrested were taken to the Lawrence County Jail.