Three Riverhead men suspected of trafficking cocaine, one a custodian at Pulaski Street School, another a "street-level crack dealer," were indicted on a total of 16 counts at Suffolk County Court on Wednesday.
According to an indictment unsealed Wednesday evening, Troy Trent aka "Troy-T," Ramon Overton aka "Pamp," and Joseph Gilliam aka "Slick" are all charged with second degree conspiracy. In addition to the conspiracy charge, Overton was indicted on 15 other counts.
“Evidence gathered during the investigation established defendants Trent and Gilliam supplied cocaine to Overton who, as the indictment details, was an active street-level crack dealer in Riverhead,” District Attorney Thomas Spota said. “Surveillance and other evidence established Overton sold crack at locations on Segal Avenue and in public parking lots on Route 58.”
Police reportedly siezed two ounces of cocaine, a small quantiy of crack cocaine, scales, and three 12 gauge pump-action shotguns from a search warrant execution at Overton's home. The indictment noted four instances of Overton selling to cocaine to an undercover officer and sales from Trent and Gilliam to Overton for resale.
Trent, a custodian at Pulaski Street School who was arrested on Feb. 4, reportedly posted bail after appearing before a Suffolk County Court, but has yet to be released, according to his lawyer Fred Fisher of Southampton. At Trent's arraignment hearing early Wednesday afternoon, Fisher told County Court Judge Martin Efman that Empire Bail Bonds was prepared to post the $25,000 bond on his client's behalf.
Joseph Gilliam, a prior felony offender, was held on $25,000 bond or $10,000 cash bail. Ramon Overton was held in lieu of $200,000 bond.
According to the Suffolk County District Attorney's office, the charges stem from an East End Drug Task Force investigation which is separate from the. Spota announced at the Feb. 3 press conference that the EEDTF investigation uncovered several admitted gang members and arrested 23 individuals in total who are suspected to have distributed over half a kilo of cocaine a week throughout Eastern Suffolk.
The investigation into Overton, Trent, and Gilliam lasted from January 2010 to December 2010.
Trent has been employed by the school district since 1992, according to School Superintendent Nancy Carney. Carney added that she was unaware of "anything out of the ordinary" in Trent's file. Clifford reported that he was arrested for DWI in 1998.
"If he is released, we will serve him with a letter prohibiting him from entering school property," Carney said. "This is a very troubling incident. But it's a single incident. We have a very dedicated and extraordinary staff throughout the school district, and this should not place a cloud over our employees as a whole."
At his arraignment, Gilliam's lawyer, Susan Menu of Riverhead, stated that her client had "passed out in jail" due to a heart arrhythmia, and had spent six days in Brookhaven Hospital. While she admitted Gilliam has had a "longstanding drug problem," she said he has recently sought help.
Assistant District Attorney Ryan Hunter said that Gilliam has served two sentences in the past for attempted sale of a controlled substance, in 1994 and 2000.
According to the District Attorney's office, Overton was previously convicted of second degree burglary, a violent felony.
The East End Drug Task Force is a multi-jurisdictional drug enforcement unit funded by the office of Suffolk County District Attorney. The task force includes detectives, police offices, and law enforcement personnel from the New York State Police, New York State Parole the Suffolk County Police Department, District Attorney Detective-Investigators, East Hampton Town Police Department, East Hampton Village Police Department, Shelter Island Police Department, Southold Police Department, Riverhead Police Department, Suffolk County Sheriff's Office, and the Suffolk County Department of Probation.