Tags Posts tagged with "drug dealers"

drug dealers

by -
0 460
Suffolk County District Attorney Ray Tierney. Photo from Tierney's office

Suffolk County District Attorney Raymond A. Tierney announced on May 18 that QHAMEL DICKERSON, 28, of Huntington Station, and RASHIED SMITH, 41,  of Central Islip, were both sentenced for selling fentanyl that resulted in two unrelated overdose  deaths of Suffolk County residents.  

Quamel Dickerson


“The fentanyl epidemic has claimed the lives of two more innocent women, and the unfortunate  reality is that this problem will continue to worsen without action,” said District Attorney Tierney.  “The dangers of fentanyl are not breaking news anymore. Not in Suffolk County, not in Albany,  and not to the drug dealers who continue to push this poison into our communities. Cheap  manufacturing and lethally high potency have exposed the legislative gaps that hinder law  enforcement’s ability to effectively manage the situation. That is why I will continue to push for a  death by dealer statute. We owe it to the victims and their families to hold all dealers of fentanyl  dealers accountable for the deaths they cause.”  

According to court documents and DICKERSON’s admission during his guilty plea allocution, on  July 5, 2022, the Suffolk County Police Department responded to East Northport for a fatal drug  overdose of a 23-year-old female. 

The victim’s cell phone, found at the scene, contained text messages between the victim and  DICKERSON in which DICKERSON agreed to sell the victim illicit pills. On July 4, 2022,  DICKERSON met with the victim and sold her counterfeit pills that bore the color, shape, and  markings of oxycodone, but contained fentanyl instead.  

In August 2022, DICKERSON used the same cell phone to communicate with an undercover  detective from the Suffolk County Police Department, where DICKERSON agreed to sell the  undercover detective the same type of pills he sold to the overdose victim. Thereafter, at a location  in Suffolk County, DICKERSON met with the undercover detective and sold them counterfeit  oxycodone pills containing fentanyl. DICKERSON was arrested on September 1, 2022.  

Rashied Smith
Rashied Smith

On March 10, 2023, DICKERSON pleaded guilty before Acting Supreme Court Justice, the  Honorable Anthony S. Senft, Jr., to two counts of Criminal Sale of a Controlled Substance in the  Third Degree, a Class B felony. DICKERSON faced up to nine years in prison at sentencing. On  April 18, 2023, Judge Senft sentenced DICKERSON to five years in prison followed by two years  of post-release supervision. The District Attorney’s Office had requested an eight-year prison  sentence. DICKERSON was represented by Scott Zerner, Esq.  

In a separate case, on the morning of June 23, 2022, the Suffolk County Police Department  responded to a home in Mastic and discovered a 43-year-old woman had fatally overdosed. The  police recovered the victim’s cell phone which contained text messages between her and SMITH  from the night before her death. In those text message conversations, SMITH agreed to sell the  victim crack cocaine and fentanyl. Police learned that SMITH had met the victim in Central Islip  where he sold her the drugs.  

Within 48 hours of the victim’s death, SMITH sold crack cocaine to an undercover detective in  the Suffolk County Police Department. A couple of days later, Smith sold crack cocaine and  fentanyl to the undercover detective. A search warrant was executed at SMITH’s residence where  police found the cell phone he used to negotiate the sales of crack cocaine and fentanyl with both  the victim and the undercover detective. 

Police also found an illegal loaded Taurus semi-automatic firearm, crack cocaine, and a digital  scale used for weighing narcotics for sale. SMITH was arrested on June 29, 2022.  

On April 7, 2023, SMITH pleaded guilty before Supreme Court Justice, the Honorable Richard  Ambro, to two counts of Criminal Sale of a Controlled Substance in the Third Degree, a Class B  felony, and one count of Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Second Degree, a Class C violent  felony. SMITH faced up to 12 years in prison at sentencing.  

On May 18, 2023, Judge Ambro sentenced SMITH to seven years in prison followed by five years  of post-release supervision. The District Attorney’s Office had requested a 10-year prison  sentence. SMITH was represented by Lonnie Hart, Jr., Esq.  

Prior to the conviction in this case, SMITH had multiple prior convictions related to drug  possession, including two separate convictions for Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance  in the Fourth Degree, a Class C felony, in both 2016 and 2019, as well as a felony conviction for  Violating the Sex Offender Registry Requirement as a Second Offense in 2013.  


Drug dealers are designing and manufacturing fentanyl-laced drugs to resemble name-brand prescriptions. Stock photo

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) took a firm stand against the spread of fentanyl earlier this month, proposing legislation to add 11 variations of the highly addictive and dangerous synthetic opioid drug to the state’s scheduled controlled substances list. If enacted, this law would help close a current loophole in New York that makes it easier for narcotics dealers to distribute deadly drugs and skirt felony charges by designing and manufacturing them to resemble name-brand prescriptions.

The governor pushed the proposal Feb. 5 as part of a 30-day state budget amendment, with the hopes of the budget passing the senate in April.

Fentanyl is between 50 and 100 times more potent than morphine. Stock photo

“These actions will give law enforcement the tools they need to combat this drug, holding the death dealers who peddle it accountable and helping ensure that our laws are able to keep pace with this evolving public health crisis,” Cuomo said. “Make no mistake: Fentanyl is potent, dangerous and its abuse is increasingly fueling the misery of the opioid epidemic.”

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, fentanyl is between 50 and 100 times more potent than morphine and even more so than heroin — the lethal dose of heroin is about 30 milligrams, while the lethal dose of fentanyl is 3mg. It is also not commonly reversed by Narcan, the lifesaving drug that combats heroin overdoses. Cuomo said the number of fentanyl-related deaths in the state increased by nearly 160 percent in 2016, a statistic that led him to evaluate what’s missing from the controlled substances list.

His push is resonating across Suffolk County.

“I applaud Governor Cuomo for taking this important step toward closing this dangerous loophole that shields drug dealers from justice and continues to tear our communities apart,” Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone (D) said in response to the governor’s statement. “I urge the state senate and assembly to include this proposal in their respective budget bills. We need to utilize every resource available to deter individuals who create and sell these deadly drugs.”

Over at the county correctional facility, Sheriff Errol Toulon Jr., who regularly visits school district across Suffolk to speak with students about the dangers of opioid use, also approved of Cuomo’s actions.

“These actions will give law enforcement the tools they need to combat this drug, holding the death dealers who peddle it accountable…”

— Andrew Cuomo

“I applaud [Cuomo] for proposing strong regulations on fentanyl analogs because it gives law enforcement another avenue to crack down on drug traffickers and dealers pushing these dangerous and lethal substances into our communities,” he said.

Tracey Farrell, a Rocky Point resident and the president of nonprofits North Shore Drug Awareness and On Kevin’s Wings, knows firsthand the devastation these opioids cause. Her son, Kevin, died of an overdose in 2012 and her daughter Breanna is currently three years in recovery.

Farrell said because there are so many different chemical makeups of fentanyl, “too often this ties the hands of our law enforcement” to enact stricter penalties.

“My son was one of 83 who passed in Suffolk County in 2012 when fentanyl wasn’t really on the radar, but five years later, that number is over 500 with a very large percentage of those deaths being caused by fentanyl,” she said. “We must take any and all steps possible to get the sale of this drug to impose the maximum sentences and potentially save lives.”

Sal Vetro, a pharmacist at Echo Pharmacy in Miller Place, said this would be a major step in the right direction toward saving lives.

“I think Cuomo’s on the right track,” Vetro said. “We’re trying to fight this epidemic and the people who need fentanyl should have fentanyl, but if it’s being used illegally, sold illegally, or causing damage illegally, those people should certainly be punished. We have to stop ignoring the problem, and this is a start.”