‘Operation Family Ties’ Leads to 9 Guilty Pleas
A nine-month investigation into sales of heroin, cocaine and PCP in Orange County led to nine guilty pleas.
On Monday in Orange County Court, 36-year-old Mark Robinson and 24-year-old Steven Reed, both of Newburgh, each pleaded guilty to conspiracy in connection with “Operation Family Ties,” a narcotics conspiracy investigation.
In May, an Orange County grand jury charged 35 defendants with felonies related to conspiring to sell cocaine and heroin, largely in the Newburgh area.
On March 13, police executed 16 search warrants and arrested over 30 people on felony charges as part of a nine-month narcotics investigation, dubbed “Operation Family Ties.”
The investigation targeted the distribution of heroin, cocaine, PCP, and marijuana in the City of Newburgh and several surrounding towns in Orange County, police say.
The investigation began in June of 2016, when police learned about a potential drug operation in the area of 170 Carson Avenue in the City of Newburgh.
Robinson and Reed each admitted being part of a conspiracy to distribute heroin, cocaine, and PCP. Both are scheduled to be sentenced on August 14, 2017.
“The conspiracies that these defendants admitted being part of illustrate just how organized drug traffickers can be as they attempt to profit from the opioid epidemic,” District Attorney David Hoovler said.
According to the Orange County District Attorney’s Office, a number of others charged in “Operation Family Ties,” pleaded guilty. They include:
- Kihuana Blackmon, 37, of Newburgh: Conspiracy
- Desmond Williams, 18, Newburgh: Criminal Possession of a Firearm
- Shanice Jones, 24, of Newburgh: Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance
- Thomas Downer, 46, of Newburgh: Conspiracy
- Valerie Williams, 41, of Newburgh: Conspiracy
- Tamika Clegg, 42, of Newburgh: Conspiracy
- Lamara Williams, 26, of Newburgh: Conspiracy
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