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Suspected drug dealers arrested

Posted: Friday, Oct 12th, 2012




VALLEY — In a joint press release issued on Thursday, law enforcement authorities announced the coordinated arrests earlier that day of 15 persons on various felony charges of illegal distribution and sale of controlled substances.

The investigation began when officers of the Chaffee County Drug Task Force developed information about prescription drug abuse locally. It quickly grew to extend into Alamosa, and additional law enforcement agencies were enlisted in the effort. The Colorado Bureau of Investigation provided undercover operatives who proved instrumental in obtaining evidence that was crucial to the case.

Other agencies that participated in the six-month investigation were the Alamosa Police Department, Chaffee County Sheriff’s Office, Colorado State Patrol, District Attorney for the 11th Judicial District, Salida Police Department, and the US Drug Enforcement Administration’s Tactical Diversion Squad.



Arrested and charged

1. Eric Luna, 22, resident of Chaffee County.

Distribution of a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession with Intent to Manufacture or Distribute a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession of a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 6 Felony

2. Anthony Luna, 25, resident of Chaffee County.

Distribution of a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession with Intent to Manufacture or Distribute a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession of a Controlled Substance II, Class 6 Felony

3. Jennifer Rivera Lovato, 32, San Luis Valley resident.

Distribution of a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession with Intent to Manufacture or Distribute a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession of a Controlled Substance II, Class 6 Felony

4. Brenda Rivera Valdez, 20, resident of Chaffee County.

Distribution of a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

5. Kenneth Muniz Sr., 57, resident of Fremont County.

Distribution of a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession with Intent to Manufacture or Distribute a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession of a Controlled Substance II, Class 6 Felony

6. Shirley Ann Chavez, 52, resident of Fremont County.

Distribution of a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession with Intent to Manufacture or Distribute a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession of a Controlled Substance II, Class 6 Felony

7. Tessa Eufemia Silva (aka “Famie”), 28, San Luis Valley resident.

Distribution of a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession with Intent to Manufacture or Distribute a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession of a Controlled Substance II, Class 6 Felony

8. Pamela Lynne Richardson, 52, San Luis Valley resident.

Distribution of a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession with Intent to Manufacture or Distribute a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession of a Controlled Substance II, Class 6 Felony

9. Leo Luna, 21, resident of Chaffee County.

Distribution of a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

10. Hollye Mitchell, 34, San Luis Valley resident.

Distribution of a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession with Intent to Manufacture or Distribute a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession of a Controlled Substance II, Class 6 Felony

11. Jeff Mitchell, 30, San Luis Valley resident.

Distribution of a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession with Intent to Manufacture or Distribute a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession of a Controlled Substance II, Class 6 Felony

12. Stella Ann Schimpf, 46, San Luis Valley resident.

Distribution of a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession with Intent to Manufacture or Distribute a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession of a Controlled Substance II, Class 6 Felony

13. Billy Darrel Webster, 39, San Luis Valley resident.

Distribution of a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession with Intent to Manufacture or Distribute a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession of a Controlled Substance II, Class 6 Felony

14. Savannah McDermott, 21,San Luis Valley resident.

Distribution of a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession with Intent to Manufacture or Distribute a Controlled Substance-Schedule II, Class 3 Felony

Possession of a Controlled Substance II, Class 6 Felony

In addition to those listed, a 17-year-old Chaffee County resident was previously arrested in this case and charged with distribution of a controlled substance, a Class 3 felony. His name is being withheld because of his age.

Additional arrests are anticipated.

Although quantities of methamphetamine and Ecstasy were involved in the transactions, most of the controlled substances were prescription medications. For the most part, suspects are alleged to have obtained the drugs by securing prescriptions from licensed physicians. Doctors, acting at the behest of their patients who convinced them of their need for the drugs, provided prescriptions for drugs that later were sold illegally.

The investigation, involving officers from local, county, state, and federal agencies is testament to a commitment to cooperation, collaboration, and resource sharing among all Colorado law enforcement agencies. In this case, authorities believe the arrests have significantly disrupted the trade in illicit drugs along the US 285 corridor in south central Colorado.

In many communities, prescription drugs have displaced other substances as the preferred choice of abusers. In part, this is due to the greater availability of these substances, and because they are seen by those who abuse them as less harmful than so-called “hard” drugs. Experience has shown however, that they can be as addictive, harmful, and sometimes as lethal as any other controlled substance.

Types of drugs include Primarily Oxycodone, Oxycontin, and Vicodin. A few deal in Ectasy and Percoset.

Locations involved were Alamosa, La Jara, Poncha Springs, Salida, Howard and Canon City.












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