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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Missouri

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Three Men Plead Guilty to Heroin Trafficking that led to Overdose


JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced today that three men have pleaded guilty to their roles in a heroin-trafficking conspiracy in Columbia, Mo.

Toney Antwane Jones, also known as “Tuffy,” 34, of Columbia, pleaded guilty today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Matt J. Whitworth. His brother, Gregory Lamont Townsend, also known as “LG,” 31, of Columbia, pleaded guilty to his role in the conspiracy on Thursday, April 24, 2014. Terrell Deandre Williams, 36, of St. Louis, Mo., pleaded guilty to his role in the conspiracy on Monday, April 28, 2014.

According to court documents, Williams provided heroin to Townsend and Jones to distribute in Columbia.

Columbia police officers were called to a local motel on May 8, 2012, in response to an apparent heroin overdose. A woman reportedly was not breathing and had no pulse. Someone in a neighboring room initiated CPR, and when emergency medical technicians arrived, the woman had a faint pulse. Later that day, the woman told officers that she and her fiancé had purchased heroin from Townsend. They met Jones, who had been sent by Townsend to complete the $30 heroin transaction, at another motel. Then they returned to their motel room, where the woman ingested half the heroin and overdosed.

Officers conducted surveillance at the motel where Jones was staying. Two individuals were stopped after leaving the motel, and both stated they had gone to the motel to purchase heroin from Townsend. The next day, May 9, 2012, officers executed a search warrant at the hotel. They found Jones in the hotel bathroom, standing in front of the sink where nine grams of heroin was recovered.

The following day, on May 10, 2012, officers arrested Townsend. Townsend attempted to flee from officers but was apprehended after a brief foot chase.

Further investigation led officers to suspect that Williams was the source of Townsend’s heroin. Investigators contacted a cooperating source, who agreed to arrange a heroin transaction with Williams. Between May 10 and May 12, 2012, the cooperating source placed a series of telephone calls to Williams to arrange a heroin transaction. During the calls, Williams agreed to sell two ounces of heroin to the cooperating source’s girlfriend for $4,800. She went to St. Louis on May 12, 2012, accompanied by officers, to meet with Williams and complete the transaction. She was provided with $4,800 and equipped with a recorder. When she arrived at the location, Williams walked out of the building and met her at her vehicle. He handed her a bag that contained 46.7 grams of heroin and she paid him $4,800.

Under federal statutes, each of the defendants is subject to a sentence of up to 20 years in federal prison without parole, plus a fine up to $1 million. Sentencing hearings will be scheduled after the completion of presentence investigations by the United States Probation Office.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jim Lynn. It was investigated by the Columbia, Mo., Police Department.
Updated January 9, 2015