Early pleas surprise judge in Detroit pill case

2 men plead guilty during arraignments

Lindsey Erdody Published:

In an uncommon move, two men accused of taking pills into Frankfort from Detroit pleaded guilty during their arraignments in Franklin Circuit Court Friday.

Lonnell Boyd, 36, of Detroit, and Brandon Wright, 23, of Detroit, were scheduled for arraignments when they entered guilty pleas.

Franklin Circuit Judge Thomas Wingate said during court that it might be the first time he’s seen guilty pleas entered at such an early stage in the process.

Boyd pleaded guilty to first-degree trafficking in a more than 10 doses of oxycodone, third-degree trafficking in Xanax and second-degree trafficking in hydrocodone.

Wright pleaded guilty to first-degree trafficking in heroin.

Both will remain in custody at Franklin County Regional Jail until sentencing on Nov. 9.

Boyd faces up to 10 years incarcerated, and Wright faces up to seven years.

Commonwealth’s Attorney Larry Cleveland took no position on probation for both cases.

“When you’re a had lad, it’s all bad, so you got to cut the best deal you can with the Commonwealth,” Cleveland said after court.

Jason Cook, 28, of Frankfort, who is also allegedly involved with Boyd and Wright, pleaded not guilty to two counts of first-degree trafficking in less than 10 doses of oxycodone, first-degree trafficking in more than 10 doses of oxycodone, third-degree trafficking in Xanax, possession of marijuana and buying or possessing drug paraphernalia.

Cleveland said Boyd and Wright came to Frankfort from Detroit on a quick trip to sell drugs.

He said traffickers will often stay with someone they know in Frankfort or find an abandoned apartment and leave once they’re out of drugs.

Former Franklin County High School and Kentucky State University football player Anthony “Roni” Robinson was also in court on Friday.

He pleaded not guilty to first-degree fleeing or evading police, speeding 26 mph over the limit, reckless driving, second-degree disorderly conduct, resisting arrest and two counts of first-degree wanton endangerment.

Cleveland said Robinson pulled up to a drug deal that was supposed to happen and took off once he saw Franklin County sheriff’s deputies there.

During the chase on Owenton Road, deputies reached speeds of 110 mph.

Robinson is known for his athletic career in football and basketball for FCHS. After graduating in 1997, he was convicted of armed robbery in Montgomery County in 1998 and spent 50 months in prison.

After being released, Robinson enrolled at KSU and joined the football team in 2003 after six years away from competitive football. During his senior year, he averaged 101 yards per game and 5.5 yards per carry as a running back.

In other action in court on Friday:

> Michael Raisor, 38, of Frankfort, was sentenced to five years probation for theft of property valued at $500 or more and being a second-degree persistent felon.

Raisor pleaded guilty in August for stealing a Kentucky Employees Credit Union ATM and the cash inside in June 2011.

He faced 11 years in prison.

Raisor, along with two other men, used a backhoe they stole from a construction site on East Main Street to lift the ATM from a Reilly Road parking lot June 18, 2011, court records say.

According to court records, the ATM was valued at more than $54,000, including the nearly $31,000 in cash inside.

> Scott Johnson, 70, of Frankfort, pleaded not guilty to use of a social network by a sex offender and two counts of distribution of a matter portraying sexual performance by a minor.

During a routine check of registered sex offenders, deputies asked Johnson if he used Facebook on his computer and he allegedly said yes. After searching the computer, photos and videos of child pornography were found.

nHerman May, 41, of Frankfort, pleaded not guilty to second-degree burglary, possession of burglary tools, fleeing or evading police, possession of marijuana and alcohol intoxication.

May was allegedly caught leaving the scene of a burglary with scissors, a flashlight, a bandana over his face and socks on his hands.

> Chad Whitson, 42, of Frankfort, pleaded not guilty to first-degree burglary and fourth-degree domestic assault.

Wingate lowered Whitson’s bond from $10,000 to $5,000 cash, but said if Whitson makes bond, he can’t have contact with George White, the owner of the house he allegedly broke into.

Whitson’s wife, the alleged victim in the domestic assault case, was in court and told Wingate she wanted her husband out of jail. Wingate will allow contact if Whitson posts bail.

> Stephen Harris, 55, pleaded guilty to first-degree criminal mischief and second-degree criminal trespass.

In June 2011, Harris broke the front glass door of Farmers Bank on West Main Street and then called 911 to report what he had done.

When police arrived, Harris told them he wanted to go back to jail or he would commit more crimes, according to court documents.

Harris faces up to five years incarcerated and will be sentenced on Nov. 9.

nWilliam Cummins, 27, pleaded guilty to second-degree assault, operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs, failure to maintain liability insurance and one headlight.

Wingate agreed to release him from jail on Friday until his sentencing date on Nov. 30. Cummins faces up to five years in jail.

Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Zach Becker took no position on probation.

> Victor Smith, 33, was sentenced to five years probation for theft, criminal possession of a forged instrument, misuse of electronic information and exploiting an adult out of more than $300.

Smith pleaded guilty in August and faced up to 20 years in prison.

He was indicted in January for stealing a debit card from his uncle to get cash and buy drugs.

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  • Wow! It sounds like you have the inside track on this bodeen! It is much worse than I thought.

  • anonymous_1713, It appears that Whilhoite chose to thwart any prosecution of Burris. When the heat was turned up over Burris getting extreme special treatment, those Commissioners Made it clear that they weren't the ones behind it. Bill May,Pffff, was going to vote for him but his silence on this made my mind up. Gippy Graham silence doesn't surprise me. His record of covering for the elitists around Frankfort is well known. Glad he isn't running again. ......As far as Larry Cleveland goes, I hope everybodys eyes are open, he is part of the Burris fix & this will go nowheres now. At worse it will be a probation deal or plead down to a misdemeanor.... Did everybody noticed all the no positions on probations. The deals are done & even repeat felony offenders are getting off with only probation. Major thefts, Probations. You name the felonies & the felons are only getting probations. That is unless one is a sick drug addict with mental issues who are only harming themselves. Thats about right in Clevelands Frankfort. Load your guns & lock your doors because everybody knows that they can get away with anything around here. As far as that thug Robinson goes, I could care less that he can play football but the sheriffs department jumped the gun & gave chase because they thought that this man was going to buy drugs. When Robinson instead drove off, that should had been the end of the sheriffs prying eyes but instead they created a deadly situation by doing what they did.

  • Sorry, that should have been "Since when does he (Cleveland) determine whether to prosecute a theft case on whether or not some elected officials of the city "want him to"? This should be an automatic call.

  • It seems that being a "had lass" ain't so bad either as in the case of the alleged theft of public property, as Betty Burriss can attest to. Commissioner "Wilder said he was “pretty disappointed” to see that local prosecutors had chosen not to pursue charges. He said that Cleveland told him he had been given the impression that city officers didn’t want him to press charges. Cleveland was not available for comment before press time." ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................ Apparently, our poet prosecutor places a much higher priority on some kid who was caught with 10 or more prescription pain killers than on someone who steals from the public on their job. Since when does he determine whether to a theft case on whether or not some elected officials of the city "want him to"?

  • It seems that being a had lad is not all that bad as the guy stealing and destroying an ATM $31000 worth of cash in it, along with an expensive piece of heavy equipment, didn't do all that bad. 5 years probation doesn't seems so bad a risk. Franklin County officials need to wake up and take care of business and the citizens of this community. I for one am fed up with these bad poets and even worse judicial officials.

  • “When you’re a had lad, it’s all bad, so you got to cut the best deal you can with the Commonwealth,” Cleveland said after court." ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................ I can't believe that we still pay this guy to sit around and think this stuff up. We are talking about putting two young men away on our dime for up to 10 years for felonies for possessing with intent to sell more than "10 doses" of prescription pain medication. Now, these drugs are so "dangerous" that most of us have taken them ourselves with no lasting ill effects. In fact, most of us probably still have the remaining "doses" of these drugs in our bathroom medicine cabinet, because we so disliked the unpleasant side effects of the way that these pain killers made us feel, that we stopped taking them before they were all gone. So, if they are so dangerous that we have to throw people in prison for 10 years just for possessing "more than 10 doses" (the law assumes the intent to sell), then how come all of the rest of us didn't gobble ever last one out of those that our doctors prescribed for us? We probably have over 50 (I haven't looked to be sure) of these kinds of pills in my medicine cabinet right now, and if they were not in their original containers and the police were to find them, they could send me to jail for possession with intent to sell too. And that would be the last thing that I would intend to do with them. I too could be a victim of the Drug War...and I hate the way these pills make me feel. What well-adjusted normal person does not? My experience tells me that the people who take these pills have pre-existing emotional problems, like being bi-polar. They are trying to self-medicate. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................ These young men's lives are ruined forever, as they will never be able to get a real job, vote, or support themselves or their families, and will probably be career criminals as the become more and more desperate. And our esteemed CA thinks that this is just some kind of big joke. I guess that Mr. Cleveland's heart has become so hardened that these people are like cattle in a slaughter house to him. The irony here is that the same drugs that these men possessed are available on-line to anyone with a computer and a credit card...so what have we really accomplished with all of this hoopla? ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................ Sunnybeach, I don't think that any of the charges that were filed against Robinson were drug related. I know that Larry Cleveland's story was that he pulled up to a drug deal, saw the police and then he took off, but when he was apprehended, he did not have any drugs. So, either Mr. Robinson was not there to do a drug deal or he was there to buy drugs from the police in some sort of sting operation. Regardless, it is not unusual for a young black man to freak out and run when being chased by a bunch of white police officers. Nothing unusual at all, and for good reason. There is also nothing in this story or in Roni Robinson's past that involves selling drugs to "our kids". Nothing at all. ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................ IMHO, The State Journal's story included Robinson's celebrated past athletic achievements to infer the tragedy of one of our community's stars falling out of the sky after getting involved with evil illicit drugs. I don't know this Robinson guy, but I would bet that his involvement with drugs is a symptom of his problems, and not his problem. If Mr. Robinson had merely restricted his drug use to the government's officially approved drugs (and apparently much safer and effective...NOT!) of alcohol and nicotine, there would have been no story here at all. Would there?

  • It's pretty sad the seriousness of crime seems to be legitimized in this article by espousing the athletic achievements of an individual. It's appalling that the writer is quoting a persons football and basketball achievements, along with yards per carry at KSU when our kids are taking drugs supplied by criminals like this one.