Three more suspected gang members plead not guilty

Wednesday, February 4, 2009 | 9:30 p.m. CST; updated 11:20 a.m. CST, Thursday, February 5, 2009

JEFFERSON CITY — Three more of the 16 people suspected of being involved in a Columbia gang pleaded not guilty Wednesday to charges including conspiracy to distribute illegal drugs.

Brandon James Isom, 19, of Columbia pleaded not guilty to charges of conspiracy to distribute controlled substances and use of a communication device to distribute illegal drugs.

Robert Lee Jones, 19, of Kansas City pleaded not guilty to charges of conspiracy to distribute controlled substances, possession with intent to distribute cocaine base and marijuana, use of a communication device to facilitate illegal drug distribution and possession of a weapon while previously convicted.

He also pleaded not guilty to another conspiracy charge that includes possession of firearms with intent to harm and intimidate and firing a gun into a group of two or more people.

Dajuan Anthony Harris, 25, pleaded not guilty to the charges of conspiracy to distribute controlled substances, use of a communication device to facilitate illegal drug distribution and possession of firearms while previously convicted.

He is also charged with possession of a stolen firearm and another conspiracy charge that includes possession of firearms with intent to harm and intimidate and fire a gun into a group of two or more people.

The three men entered their pleas before U.S. Magistrate William A. Knox in the central division of the U.S. Court for the Western District of Missouri.

Knox ruled to have the suspects remain in custody until future pretrial hearings, but he scheduled additional pretrial hearings in which he would consider releasing Jones and Isom into the custody of their families.

The release conditions could include house arrest with some type of a monitoring device, such as an ankle bracelet or GPS, taking GED classes and posting bail, Knox said.

Among the evidence introduced against the three men by Assistant U.S. Attorney Lawrence E. Miller on Wednesday was evidence obtained during searches as well as an FBI witness and wire-tap recordings.

On April 25, 2008, authorities found a firearm, body armor and drug paraphernalia where Jones was believed to be staying in Columbia, Miller said.

But, Jones’s attorney, Troy Stabenow, argued that this was not his primary residence and the items could have belonged to other people who lived in the home.

Cheviss Caron Denny, 20, Donna C. Coats, 39, Michael Lee Stapleton, 22, and Robert Darnell Simmons, 36, were charged earlier in the week for various charges related to alleged gang activity and drug distribution. They are currently scheduled for trial on July 20.

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Ray Shapiro February 4, 2009 | 11:46 p.m.

It's good to see cut throats plead.
Releasing them into our community, even with "restrictions," puts us all at risk.
GED classes? You're kidding me...
(Ah, the benefits of being a "thug.")

(Report Comment)
marvin saunders February 5, 2009 | 4:31 a.m.

Wait until you see the plea deal they get.I would be willing to bet the firearms charge(to me the most dangerest) will be dropped.As far as the body armor goes you need that to walk around our mayor's wonderland town & parks anyway..

(Report Comment)
Charles Dudley Jr February 5, 2009 | 4:36 a.m.

They will only get to plead if the Feds let them plead and then they will have to sing in a higher pitch than Pavarotti ever did.

(Report Comment)
joseph johnson February 27, 2009 | 12:52 p.m.

Criminals and the Columbia Police Department
By Johnsonjoseph

Posted February 27, 2009 at 12:44 a.m.

What about our uniformed officers that are supposed to protect and serve? This article is in regards to the Columbia Police Department and Detective Joe Jackson. Our community has received a tip from one of Detective Joe Jackson's own men. Wow!! we don't know what to think about this. Looks like Detective Jackson and his crew have been working on, and doing top secret surveillance on a few people in regards to defrauding the Social Services Welfare program (FoodStamp Program). This operation has been going on for about a year or so. I'm sure for the criminal's out there they sure do appreciate that detective giving them the heads up. I guess that's what friends are for. It's allways good to have connections on the inside. There is an article listed on MYSPACE about this situation. I am going to quote some key factors. It seems as if Joe Jackson is not liked in this town. Looks like he hasn't been able to get these gun charges to stick on some of these so-called gang members. Cases are being dismissed due to lack of evidence. What's wrong with that picture? The article on MY SPACE refers to detective Jackson and his crew "THE GOONE SQUAD". WOW, what a name for the CPD Detectives. Looks like these young kids don't trust the police enough to tell them what they want to know. Well I guess I don't blame them if you got one on the inside tipping the criminals off. These cops lie just as much and even more than the people on the street. The MYSPACE ARTICLE also says that "The Detective Goon's will be posted up (sitting) at every grocery store in Columbia, Walmart Super Center in particular. They will be waiting for people to go inside and use other's EBT cards. Once you do you will be arrested. Those that have been under surveillance will be arrested anyway. MYSPACE also has photographs showing these unmarked undercover vehicles that we would probable never have noticed if it weren't for these photo's (the photo's aren't very good, though). This sting is due to go down sometime next week!! This operation could prove to be very dangerous to innocent by standers. One of these criminals could react in a very violent way. Here are some of the license plate #'s posted: Blue Chev Truck (BWE-442), Burgundy Ford Explorer (WB6-W3B), Blue Durango (5CS-67G), Tan Chev Truck w/extended cap (SUE-910), Orange color car similar to a scion with tinted windows, white truck (644-PYI), Chev Truck (2YF-295), Black Truck (2AB-329) extended cab, Tan Truck (9UE-310), Green Chevrolet Silverado (343-R24). Wow, this seems to be a really poor job of surveillance. But, I pretty much expect this from Columbia's Finest!! All of you good people in Columbia be careful and all of the criminals do thank one of the Crew of Detective Joe Jackson!!!

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