Sheriff: Several arrested in Pike Co. drug trafficking ring ran by inmate inside Ohio prison

WAVERLY, OH (WCMH) — Pike County Sheriff Charles Reader says several people have been arrested in a drug trafficking ring being run by an inmate in the Ohio prison system.

According to Reader, an investigation by the Pike County Drug and Major Crimes Task Force uncovered a drug trafficking ring being directed by Richard Smith, an inmate inside an Ohio prison.

Reader says other individuals involved in the ring were trafficking methamphetamine, and heroin believed to be containing fentanyl, throughout the county. Approximately $10,000 cash, one recreation vehicle, four ATV’s, two motorcycles, nine vehicles, and an estimated 70 prepaid credit cards used in the funding and trafficking of drugs were also seized.

During a search warrant at six locations in Pike County, 23 individuals were arrested in relation to the case. The sheriff’s office says many of those arrested have ties to the MS-13, Konvicted Family or Good Fellas gangs.

Among those arrested include (Tap to see mugshots in the news app):

  • Richard Smith
  • Chasity Gillenwater
  • Christopher Smith
  • Jackie Smith
  • April Smith
  • Brian Carter
  • William Schneider
  • Donyiel Montgomery
  • Ben Hatmacher
  • Claudia Wicker
  • David Crabtree Jr.
  • Ashley Crabtree
  • Brian Lawson
  • Brittany Ruth
  • David Crabtree Sr.
  • Courtney Crabtree

Police are still working to locate Elvie Royster, who is wanted for questioning. He is believed to be in Scioto County in an older model red 4-door car with front end damage. If spotted, call police immediately. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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