Atlanta Woman Who Checked Son Out Of High School For Chattanooga Drug Deal Gets 10 Years, 1 Month

Thursday, November 21, 2013

An Atlanta woman who checked her son out of high school to come to Chattanooga to interpret for her on a major drug deal was sentenced Thursday to serve 10 years and one month in federal prison.

Leticia Gonzalez was sentenced by Judge Curtis Collier, who said her punishment would have been much more harsh had she not cooperated with authorities. She testified when two co-defendants went to trial.

Ms. Gonzalez, 53, is also due to face deportation when she finishes her sentence.

A DEA agent said Ms. Gonzalez did not know she was dealing with an undercover agent in drug negotiations at Cracker Barrels at East Ridge and Lookout Valley. When she was arrested she had $75,000 in cash for a large cocaine purchase. Judge Collier said that was "more money than most people make in a year."

In another planned drug deal, she was discussing the purchase of $250,000 in illegal drugs.

The agent said a raid at her home at Conyers, Ga., also turned up three kilos of pure meth in a shed. Her attorney, Hannah Stokes, said Ms. Gonzalez denies that the meth was hers. She said Ms. Gonzalez got into the drug activity because her older son was arrested for dealing in meth, leaving her with a large debt to drug lords. The agent acknowledged that he was shown texts threatening her.

A man at the house was described as a "mule" in the operation, who had made a number of trips to pick up drugs, including bringing back meth from Texas in tubular containers hidden with wicker furniture.

The agent said her younger son said he planned to go into the drug business also, and he was looking for a marijuana supplier.

Inside the Gonzalez home were two digital scales and an electronic money counter in addition to other evidence of drug activity. 

Judge Collier termed her "a pretty high-level drug trafficker."

   



Many Waldens Ridge Scenes Featured In Stokes Picture Book

A number of early views of Waldens Ridge are among the rarities found in the Stokes Photo Collection. There are many photos of the roads up the mountain showing streetcars, wagons and early autos. There are scenes at Rainbow Lake, Falling Water Falls, Signal Point and other scenic spots. Several photos are included of the Signal Mountain Hotel. The more than 700 photos ... (click for more)

2 Known Meth Distributors Arrested In Catoosa County

Two have been arrested in Catoosa County on drug charges.   Catoosa County Sheriff’s Office deputies conducted a traffic stop on Wednesday, at 7 p.m., on Highway 41 in Ringgold. During the stop, deputies seized two pounds of methamphetamine, which has an estimated street value of $30,000. Deputies arrested Jesus Humberto Lopez Deanda, 27, of Lilburn, Ga., and ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Has Lost Its Most Popular Citizen - Luther Masingill - And Response

Chattanooga has lost its most popular citizen – Luther Masingill. Although we are saddened we cherish the memories.  All of us have a Luther story.  Mine is the first time I met Luther.  This was before TV and all of Chattanooga listened to Luther on the radio.  I was 12-years-old.  Some of my buddies and I had gone to the State Theater in downtown ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Policeman’s Prayer

Every year, when the Law Enforcement Foundation of Greater Chattanooga holds its annual luncheon, it is one of the most heartening displays of what America really believes, down deep inside. The most prominent and influential leaders in the community – well over 1,000 -- gather to pay tribute and pledge their support to our heroes in blue who are unfaltering in their devotion, service ... (click for more)

Signal Mountain Falls In State Volleyball Semis

SMYRNA, Tenn. – It’s a good thing that Signal Mountain volleyball coach Jennifer Redman is a young lady because her heart might not be able to stand the pressure if she wasn’t. Redman’s Lady Eagles were thisclose to being sent to the loser’s bracket in the opening round of the State Volleyball Tournament here at Stewarts Creek High School Wednesday afternoon. Had it been a ... (click for more)

Boyd-Buchanan Sweeps Loretto To Open Class A State Volleyball

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – Playing what coach Alfie Dodd called a sub-par match, Boyd-Buchanan’s Lady Bucs were still good enough to sweep Loretto, 3-0, Wednesday morning in the opening match of the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association’s Class A state volleyball tournament at Blackman High School. Set scores were 25-19, 25-14, 25-20. “We advance and we know we can ... (click for more)