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."


Christopher Goode, Aaron Ward Charged In Burglary Of Pizza Hut On Brainerd Road

Police have charged Christopher Dewayne Goode and Aaron Patrick Ward with the burglary of the Pizza Hut on Brainerd Road. Police said Goode, 23, of 3301 Pinewood Ave., admitted to carrying out several burglaries between Feb. 22 and March 19. Video from the Pizza Hut showed a tall black male and a shorter black male with a beard walking from the rear of the building. The shorter ... (click for more)

Driver Will Not Be Charged In Death Of Pedestrian In Dalton Last Thursday

The Dalton Police Department will not be filing criminal charges against a driver involved in a crash last week that killed a pedestrian who was attempting to cross Chattanooga Road near the intersection with Tibbs Road. The investigation into the incident showed that the victim was heavily intoxicated at the time of the crash, police said. The  crash happened around  ... (click for more)

The Panhandling "Tax" On Gunbarrel

I’ve been reading about the panhandling problem in downtown; it is a huge problem in the Gunbarrel area, too.  It’s commonplace to be accosted by panhandlers when walking from your parked car into a commercial establishment.  And often they are aggressive.  I look carefully around my car before getting out, but sometimes someone will be lurking in between cars and ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Sheriff’s Request

Jim Hammond will talk to members of the Hamilton County School Board on Thursday afternoon and, just like any police officer in the United States, he will request that everybody “stay in their own lane.” Some school board members tend to believe they need to help decide the best methods of protecting our children. They believe this is one of the things they were elected to do in ... (click for more)

Keiser, Wigg Power Ooltewah Past East Hamilton, 9-5, in 5-3A Baseball

Frustrated by an early season hitting slump, Ooltewah left-fielder Payton Keiser broke loose with four hits, including a clutch three-run triple in a five-run seventh inning, and drove in five runs as the Owls beat rival East Hamilton, 9-5, Tuesday in District 5-3A action in horrible weather for baseball. Keiser had run-scoring singles in the second and fourth innings and ... (click for more)

Cleveland Rally Tops Walker Valley, 4-1

CHARLESTON, Tenn – Cleveland pitching ace Camden Sewell is used to the gaudy individual numbers and he rarely disappoints. Unfortunately, he has walked off the mound a few too many times in tough battles such as the one with Walker Valley  Tuesday  night without the one number he most cherishes.   That number being the one you put in the win column. ... (click for more)