10 Columbia Residents, One KC Man Charged in Cocaine Conspiracy

6 years 2 months 5 days ago Friday, March 16 2012 Mar 16, 2012 Friday, March 16, 2012 3:52:00 PM CDT March 16, 2012 in News
By: KOMU Staff

JEFFERSON CITY - Beth Phillips, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced today that 10 Columbia residents and a Kansas City man have been charged in federal court with participating in a conspiracy to distribute cocaine.

Samuel Raphael Johnson, 34, of Kansas City, and Levi McLean Franklin Coolley, 33, Jonathan Richard Gray, 33, Patrick Jeremy O'Blennis, 32, Russell Preston Browns, 30, George Dale Wolchko, 30, Eric Paxton Pyle, 33, Travis Keith Rudloff, 35, and Sara Jean Patrick Browns, 25, all of Columbia, were charged in a five-count indictment that was returned under seal by a federal grand jury in Jefferson City on Feb. 16, 2012. The indictment was unsealed today following the arrests and initial court appearances of several defendants.

The federal indictment alleges that all of the defendants participated in a conspiracy to distribute cocaine in Boone County and elsewhere from July 2008 to Feb. 15, 2012.

Yun Yi Chang, 33, and Jessica Lynn Jobe, 29, both of Columbia, were charged in a relatable, but separate, federal criminal complaint that was filed under seal on Thursday, March 15, 2012, in the U.S. District Court in Jefferson City. The complaint, which was unsealed today, alleges that Chang and Jobe participated in a conspiracy to distribute cocaine in Boone County from December 2011 to March 14, 2012.

Johnson, Coolley, Russell Browns and Pyle are charged together in the indictment with one count of participating in a conspiracy to distribute marijuana in Boone County and elsewhere from July 2011 to Feb. 15, 2012.

Johnson is also charged with one count of possessing crack cocaine with the intent to distribute in Jackson County, and one count of possessing marijuana with the intent to distribute in Jackson County.

Johnson is also charged with being a felon in possession of ammunition. According to the indictment, Johnson was in possession of 50 rounds of .223-caliber ammunition and 38 rounds of .45-caliber ammunition on Nov. 8, 2011. Under federal law, it is illegal for anyone who has been convicted of a felony to be in possession of any firearm or ammunition. Johnson has prior felony convictions for unlawful use of a weapon and drug trafficking.

Phillips cautioned that the charges contained in the indictment and complaint are simply accusations, and not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charges must be presented to a federal trial jury, whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.

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