Updated Mon, May 12, 2014 1:09 pm
Law enforcement personnel from the Athens County Sheriff's Department, Athens Police Department, Ohio University Police Department and the Athens County Prosecutor
will be holding a news conference at 2 p.m. to announce more about major drug arrests in Athens County over the past two weeks.
Last week, Derek James Gyure, 26, of Glouster was arrested following a four car chase.
Upon his arrest, Gyure was seen throwing a green ammunition box into the brush. The box was recovered and contained over 1,400 tablets. These tablets, believed to be Oxycodone 30 mg pills, have a street value totaling $42,000.
In addition, the box contained over $17,000 in cash.
Gyure was armed with a .40 caliber Glock handgun at the time of his arrest. Police also seized a cache of firearms after searching Gyure's residence.
The drug ring in Glouster extends through Columbus to Detroit.
A 22-year-old Glouster man accused of being a major player in the drug trade in the area has been arrested and is being held on $200,000 bond.
John Casey Metcalf appeared in Athens County Municipal Court Friday on five counts of trafficking in drugs, three of which are second-degree felonies and two of which are third-degree felonies. Each of the five counts allege that Metcalf sold the drugs in the vicinity of a school, which increased the felony level of the charges.
"This arrest is the result of the cooperative efforts of local law enforcement,” said Athens County Interim Sheriff Rodney Smith in a news release. "I’m proud to have strengthened the Narcotics Enforcement Team through the addition of the Athens Police Department, the Ohio University Police Department and the Athens County Prosecutor's Office. Working together, we’re going after those at the top of the pyramid — large-scale drug dealers like Casey Metcalf. We’re committed to attacking this problem at the source."
Smith told The Messenger that narcotics officers made a number of controlled purchases of pills on Metcalf over the past several weeks.
The prosecutor's office donated $4,000 to use in drug buys, and Blackburn alleged that a number of large buys were made from Metcalf.
"It's been a long time since we've had a case out of Glouster that had multiple high-level buys," Blackburn said.
Metcalf is scheduled for a preliminary hearing on May 9 at 2 p.m. in municipal court. Should the case go to grand jury, Blackburn said additional charges may be pursued.
Both Blackburn and Smith alleged that Metcalf has been on law enforcement's radar for some time and credited the combined efforts of the two offices, along with Athens Police Department and Ohio University Police Department, for the bust.
According to court records, the buys occurred on April 17, April 22, April 30 and May 1.
Blackburn said the prosecution had asked for $500,000 as a bond for Metcalf.
"Selling drugs in a school zone, that's not acceptable and we're not going to allow that," Blackburn said. "Just over three or four weeks, we made several $500 buys. That's a lot of money being circulated on drugs."
As currently charged, Metcalf could face up to 33 years in prison if convicted.