Federal grand jury indicts local residents on drug and gun charges

Federal grand jury indicts local residents on drug and gun charges

Staff report


A federal grand jury has indicted Warren and Windham men on cocaine distribution conspiracy charges, and two Youngstown men and a Lisbon man on gun charges.

All of these cases are being prosecuted by David M. Toepfer, the Youngstown-based assistant U.S. attorney.

Mario D. Ervin, 34, of Warren, who remains at large, and Richard Scales, 27, of Windham, who was arrested Wednesday, are charged with conspiring to distribute and distributing more than an ounce of crack cocaine during November 2012.

Ervin supplied Scales with crack for distribution in the Ravenna area and elsewhere, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.

The drug case was investigated by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and the Portage County Drug Task Force.

In one gun case, Joshua Heasley, 24, of Youngstown, is charged with falsely telling a Youngstown pawnbroker in writing that he was the actual purchaser of a 12-gauge shotgun, when, in fact, he was buying it for someone else.

Crispulo Rodriguez, 41, of Youngstown, was charged with being a felon with a .45-caliber pistol and ammunition after having been convicted in Massachusetts of armed robbery, manslaughter and other crimes.

Bernard A. Ritteger, 33, of Lisbon, was charged with possessing an unregistered destructive device, namely a .12-gauge street-sweeper-style shotgun.

The gun cases, stemming from alleged gun law violations last year, were investigated by the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Youngstown police.

The Ohio Adult Parole Authority assisted in the Rodriguez case.

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