Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Local News

September 4, 2013

Two men sentenced to prison as part of Bluefield Pill Initiative

BLUEFIELD — U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin announced today two more convictions in the Bluefield Pill Initiative.

Goodwin said a Mercer County man and a Baltimore resident were both sentenced to prison on Sept. 3 for illegal distribution of prescription drugs. The sentences were handed down by Senior United States District Judge David A. Faber in U.S. District Court in Bluefield.  

“Fighting the pill epidemic will continue to be my office’s leading priority,” Goodwin said. “Pill dealers will be caught and they will be prosecuted.”

Goodwin said Tyler Thorpe, 71, of Bluefield, was sentenced to four years and three months in prison. Thorpe previously pleaded guilty in April to distribution of hydromorphone, a powerful prescription painkiller commonly known as Dilaudid. Goodwin said on Sept. 12, 2012, Thorpe sold hydromorphone to a person cooperating with law enforcement authorities.

Goodwin said Robert J. Fleek Jr., 31, of Baltimore, Md., was sentenced to two-and-a-half years in prison. Fleek previously pleaded guilty in April to distribution of Dilaudid and buprenorphine. Buprenorphine, commonly known by the trade name Suboxone or Subutex, is a drug intended to help people overcome opioid addiction as part of a rehabilitation. program. Goodwin said Fleek sold hydromorphone pills to persons cooperating with law enforcement on five different occasions between January 25, 2012, and March 16, 2012.  Goodwin said Fleek also sold buprenorphine to a person cooperating with law enforcement.  

The Bluefield Pill Initiative is a collaborative, multi-agency regional law enforcement effort designed to halt prescription drug trafficking in Mercer, McDowell, and Wyoming counties.  The Bluefield Pill Initiative is led by the Southern Regional Drug and Violent Crime Task Force, which includes the West Virginia State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation, the Mercer, McDowell and Wyoming County Sheriff’s Departments, and the Bluefield and Princeton Police Departments.

Text Only
Local News
  • new water treatment facility Officials break ground on new waste water facility

    Rain didn’t dampen enthusiasm Thursday when ground was broken for a wastewater plant that will double both the treatment capacity and opportunities for economic development in the Claypool Hill and Wardell communities.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Absentee voting lagging

    Absentee balloting is off to a slow start in a closely-watched Southwest Virginia Senate race that will determine which political party controls the General Assembly.  
    Three candidates are vying to succeed former lawmaker Phillip Puckett, who resigned in June. A special election is set for Aug. 19. The candidates are Republican A. Benton “Ben” Chafin Jr. Democrat D.M. “Mike” Hymes and independent Rick A. Mullins.

    July 25, 2014

  • Civil complaint filed against GM alleging defects caused local woman’s death

    The estate of a young Mercer County woman and her unborn child have filed a civil complaint in Mercer County Circuit Court alleging that a defective ignition switch in the woman’s 2005 Chevy Cobalt led to her death as well as the death of her unborn child.
    Keisha Dawn Vest, 26, of Princeton, the wife of Jason Vest, and mother of a (then) 3-year-old son, was driving to Mt. Airy, N.C., on May 2, 2006, when the brakes on her vehicle failed. Mrs. Vest was working in Mt. Airy as an MRI technician. Without brakes, Mrs. Vest lost control of her vehicle and entered an intersection into the path of a tractor-trailer. She died as a result of the injuries she received in the wreck.

    July 25, 2014

  • ‘Overwhelming:’ Area fans supporting Saints trip to West Virginia

    The community response to the New Orleans Saints’ three-week visit to The Greenbrier for training camp can be described best in one word that Greenbrier owner Jim Justice, Saints general manager Mickey Loomis and Saints head coach Sean Payton all used Thursday when discussing the team’s first 24-plus hours in the Mountain State.
    “Overwhelming,” they all agreed.

    July 25, 2014

  • Police continue to search for suspects in local robberies

    Three robbery suspects remain at large in Mercer and Tazewell counties.

    July 25, 2014

  • Construction begins ... Ground broken on Tazewell County wastewater treatment plant

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Absentee balloting underway in closely watched 38th senatorial district contest

    July 24, 2014

  • Princeton man sues GM over wife’s crash death

    July 24, 2014

  • Press conference ... Son gets life for murders

     After pleading no contest in Tazewell County Circuit Court to charges of capitol murder-robbery, a Virginia man was sentenced to life in prison with no possibility of parole for the murder of his own parents.

    July 24, 2014 3 Photos

  • Search continues for suspect impersonating a police officer

    The deputy who is leading the investigation into last weekend’s incident involving an individual who made a traffic stop while impersonating a police officer said she has stepped up the search, and hopes to have a sketch artist work with the victim to get a description.

    July 24, 2014

National and World
Newspaper Deivery Routes Available
Sister Newspapers' News
Local News Videos