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Son of former crime lab director pleads guilty in large marijuana case

Published: Sunday, July 08, 2018 @ 11:28 AM


            Thomas Betz
Thomas Betz

Two local men accused of cultivating and trafficking more than 44 pounds of marijuana have pleaded guilty to some charges in exchange for others being dismissed.

Thomas J. Betz, 38, of Springboro the son of former Miami Valley Crime Lab director Ken Betz, pleaded guilty to engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, illegal cultivation of marijuana between 5,000 and 20,000 grams and money laundering.

The first count carries a statutory sentencing range of 3 to 11 years, while the other two have sentencing ranging from 9 to 36 months. Counts of trafficking, possession of criminal tools and were dismissed, according to court records.

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RELATED: Betz, Dorley plead not guilty in marijuana growing case

Michael C. Dorley, 41, pleaded guilty to second-degree engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity and illegal cultivation of between 5,000 and 20,000 grams of marijuana. In exchange, there two forfeiture specifications were dismissed. Dorley’s corrupt activity charge is punishable by a sentence of 2 to 8 years.

Visiting Judge Thomas Herman (retired from Clermont County) scheduled sentencing for Aug. 15. The Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office named a special prosecutor — Jon Marshall of Butler County — to avoid any appearance of conflict of interest.

The case stemmed from May 2017 search warrants served by the Tactical Crime Suppression Unit (TCSU) at buildings on Kling Drive and TB Livery Inc. on Valley Street in Dayton plus Woodville Drive in Harrison Twp. and West Waterbury Drive in Springboro.

RELATED: Ex-crime lab director’s son indicted on drug, other charges

Both defendants had been jailed but after the June plea they posted bond. Before that, Betz was allowed to attend his son’s school function and a T-ball game.

As part of the plea deal, Betz agreed to forfeit the Woodville residence, a GMC Yukon Denali and money from bank accounts.

A bill of particulars filed by Marshall shows investigators learned in late 2016 that no one was residing at the Woodville residence, which Betz and his wife Melanie purchased for $75,000 in 2012. Trash pulls, electricity records, thermal imaging scans, GPS tracking on the suspects’ vehicles, bank and tax records and surveillance were used by the TCSU.

In addition to the marijuana, grow lights, accessories, Ziploc bags, rubber gloves and other packaging and distribution tools were seized.

RELATED: Crime lab director’s son, two others named as suspects after drug raids

Earlier in the case, the defendants made a motion to suppress evidence and ask for the identity of a confidential informant who provided background data used to obtain multiple search warrants.

The indictment had called for the forfeiture of four of Betz’s vehicles. Multiple homes, bank accounts and Dorley’s 1966 Ford Mustang are listed in the indictment as criminal instruments used in the commission of crimes.

Betz has had other legal issues, declaring bankruptcy in 2002 when he owed debts to at least three casinos, according to U.S. Bankruptcy Court records.

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No arrests made during OVI checkpoint in Butler County

Published: Saturday, July 21, 2018 @ 2:04 AM
Updated: Sunday, July 22, 2018 @ 7:08 PM

UPDATE @ 7:00 p.m. (July 22):

No arrests were made during an OVI checkpoint Saturday night in Fairfield.

98 cars passed through the checkpoint between 11:00 p.m. and 1:00 a.m., and was conducted in the northbound lane of U.S. 127 at Pleasant Avenue and Symmes Road, according to Butler County OVI Task Force Coordinator Pete Reising. Five cars were diverted for further investigation, but there were no arrests.

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Checkpoints and saturation patrols are continuing efforts by the task force to reduce OVI related crashes resulting in injuries and fatalities. 

FIRST REPORT:

An OVI checkpoint will be held in Fairfield Saturday night by the Butler County OVI Task Force. 

RELATED: No arrests at latest Butler County OVI checkpoint

The checkpoint will be conducted in the northbound lane of US 127 at Pleasant Avenue and Symmes Road from 11 p.m. to no later than 3 a.m. 

Checkpoints and saturation patrols are continuing efforts by the task force to reduce OVI related crashes resulting in injuries and fatalities.

Got a tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to newsdesk@cmgohio.com.

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West Chester man arrested after standoff with police

Published: Sunday, July 22, 2018 @ 12:00 AM

Rahoul Jones
Rahoul Jones

A West Chester Twp. man barricaded himself in his home briefly before he was arrested on weapons and domestic violence changes.

Rahoul Jones, 38, was arrested at his home on Crescentville Road at around 4:30 a.m. July 15.

Township spokeswoman Barb Wilson said Jones was alone in the house when police arrived, but he did have weapons.

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“They initially called SWAT out for the call but a negotiator got him out before SWAT ever got to the scene,” Wilson said.

RELATED: 71 people indicted in Butler and Warren counties

Jones allegedly struck and choked the victim.

He was charged with domestic violence, receiving stolen property (a handgun), having weapons under a disability, obstructing official business and telecommunications harassment.

The case was bound over to the grand jury from Area III Court on Thursday. As of Friday he was still in the Butler County Jail.

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Man arrested in Riverside SWAT standoff ID’d, report says

Published: Sunday, July 22, 2018 @ 4:48 AM
Updated: Sunday, July 22, 2018 @ 9:54 AM

Riverside Standoff

UPDATE @ 9:54 a.m.:

The suspect allegedly involved in a standoff with the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office SWAT team and multiple agencies in Riverside Sunday morning has been identified.

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Jeffrey Jordan, 48, was booked into Montgomery County Jail around 7:30 a.m. but has not been formally charged. Charges of inducing panic are pending, according to jail records.

Jeffrey Jordan, 48, booked into Montgomery County Jail on pending charges.

UPDATE @ 7:55 a.m.:

A police standoff involving multiple departments and the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office SWAT team ended Sunday morning after police took a 48-year-old male into custody.

Sgt. David Crigler of the Riverside Police Department confirmed crews were dispatched to a residence in the 400 block of Darnell St. for domestic violence at approximately 1:53 a.m. The Riverside Fire Department, Huber Heights and Trotwood units also assisted.

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The suspect’s wife told police she called for help after he threatened her, loaded a weapon and then pointed it at her. He then turned the gun on himself threatening suicide, Sgt. Crigler said. She was able to leave the residence unharmed.

Sgt. Crigler said a SWAT team was deemed necessary after the suspect refused to leave the home. Police attempted communicating with the him using a megaphone but were unsuccessful. They eventually made contact with the suspect through multiple phone calls.

The suspect was taken into custody without incident and is expected to be booked into the Montgomery County Jail for domestic violence.

UPDATE @ 6:41 a.m.: 

A standoff incident involving SWAT, and Riverside and Trotwood police departments has ended after a male was taken into custody Sunday morning.

The incident occurred at a residence in the 400 block of Darnell Street and ended at approximately 6:16 a.m. when the man was taken into custody. Police ordered the man to lay on the ground after he walked backwards out of the residence and then placed him in handcuffs. 

Police and SWAT crews on scene of a standoff in the 400 block of Darnell St. in Riverside.(JEFFERY BROWN / STAFF)

The man has been described as a “middle-aged Caucasian” but his identity remains unknown.

Police have not released the circumstances regarding the standoff or what charges the man may face.

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FIRST REPORT:

A SWAT team arrived at a residence in the 400 block of Darnell Street in Riverside Sunday morning.

City dispatch confirmed a SWAT team arrived at the location Sunday at approximately 4:25 a.m. but could not provide any details regarding the situation.

We are on our way to the scene and will update this story as more details become available. 

Got a tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to newsdesk@cmgohio.com.

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Victim found with gunshot wound after shooting near Brown St.

Published: Saturday, July 21, 2018 @ 3:30 AM
Updated: Saturday, July 21, 2018 @ 10:39 PM

UPDATE @ 10:25 p.m. (July 21):

Police found a victim with a gunshot wound near the Oregon District early Saturday morning after crews responded to the 110 block of Brown Street.

Crews were originally called out to an area on Pine Street around 3:00 a.m., but when police didn’t find anyone there, dispatch contacted them about a person with a gunshot wound on Brown Street.

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A Dayton police report states what the victim said and what at least one witness saw. One person who flagged down officers said they saw three men fighting and a handgun was seen before two men started chasing a third man through a parking lot on Pine Street. 

Police found who they believed was that third man alive with a gunshot wound to his right leg who told police that he was shot by another person on E. Fifth Avenue. 

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“Every time I’ve been here it’s been so calm. There never seems to be anything out of the ordinary,” said Emily Hanrahan of New Carlisle. 

The man was later transported to Miami Valley Hospital where police further interviewed him. He said he had gotten into an argument with the owner of a food vendor and claimed the owner had punched him once, then again, and ‘knocked him out’ before pulling a gun. The man ran away to hide in a nearby dumpster and realized he’d been shot, stated the report.

Vending carts and food trucks were all packed up by the time police responded. 

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News from this incident didn’t stop people from enjoying their Saturday night. “I only go places where I know that I’m going to have a good time and not have to worry about that. If I’m going to the Oregon District, I don’t have to worry about that,” said Phil Crisp of Springfield. 

There are currently no leads on suspects or other witnesses at this time. 

UPDATE @ 5:15 a.m.:

Montgomery County Regional Dispatch confirmed officers did not log any reports after being called to the scene of a reported shooting in Dayton.

The incident was initially reported at approximately 2:59 a.m. Saturday near the 110 block of Brown Street. Scanner reports indicated a medic was requested for a shooting victim at the location.

The county dispatch confirmed officers were called to that location and were then moved to the 320 block of E. 5th St., but did not confirm whether or not a victim was found.

FIRST REPORT:

Police crews and a medic are en route to a reported shooting in the 110 block of Brown Street in Dayton, Montgomery County Regional Dispatch confirmed.

The shooting was reported at approximately 2:59 a.m. Saturday.

Scanner reports indicated there has been at least one victim, injuries unknown.

We are on our way to the scene and will update this story as more details become available. 

Got a tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to newsdesk@cmgohio.com.

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