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Feds: Middletown group would 'punish anyone who stood in their way' of their opioid trafficking

Posted at 1:05 PM, May 21, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-21 17:42:25-04

CINCINNATI — Newly-unsealed court records detail how authorities allege a Middletown-based group going by the name "ALL STATE" sold highly addictive opioids and used violence to support the illegal enterprise.

Between October 2018 and May 2019, the group relied on revenue from the storage, production, distribution and transportation of heroin and fentanyl, according to the indictment. They used stash houses and trap houses to store drugs, equipment and money, spoke in code and carried guns to intimidate rivals and "punish anyone who stood in their way," the indictment states.

A federal grand jury indicted six people — Benwan Alvin Edwards, Marqui Dee Lamont Conley, Joseph Lee Singletary Jr., Will Dan Owens V, Hailey Elaine Perry Meeks and Tyrese Anotion Robinson — on 39 counts, including charges of narcotics conspiracy, possession with intent to distribute, narcotics distribution, possession of a firearm by a prohibited person, possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime and brandishing firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.

Edwards and Conley were the leaders of the group, with the others serving as distributors, couriers and enforcers, according to the indictment.

Court records detail numerous alleged drug sales, specifying weight and prices. In January, authorities said Edwards discussed wanting a person killed, saying "he gotta die." A few days later, Edwards, Conley and another person discussed a murder-for-hire during a drug transaction.

On another occasion, Meeks and Robinson threatened a person with a gun, according to the indictment. Meeks said, "I've got hitters out here."

Conley and Edwards put out hits on four people, according to an FBI special agent's affidavit. One was arrested and jailed on other charges, but the others were shot and two of them died. The third victim now suffers from paralysis. Middletown police said they believe the group is also tied directly or indirectly to three other homicides.

Edwards even offered one person $60,000 in cash to shoot up a Middletown police officer's car "as retribution" for traffic stops involving ALL STATE members' vehicles, the special agent said.

Local and federal authorities raided seven Middletown addresses, plus others in Dayton and Miamisburg, earlier this month. They seized more than $11,000 in cash from four of the properties. They're also seeking to force the suspects to forfeit 15 vehicles — including BMWs, a Jaguar and Maserati — 29 cellphones and eight firearms plus ammunition.

Edwards was arrested on the day of the raids. Owens and Meeks are also in custody, according to court records. U.S. Marshals and local police are still looking for the other three suspects.

Meeks has a custody hearing scheduled for Wednesday. Owens has a hearing scheduled for next week.

Authorities asked anyone with information about the whereabouts of the other suspects to call local police or the FBI at 513-421-4310.