4 sentenced in Abingdon for drug trafficking case


Four members of a drug distribution organization that trafficked methamphetamine, heroin, oxycodone, cocaine, and other drugs from Georgia into Southwest Virginia were sentenced recently in federal court on drug conspiracy charges, United States Attorney Thomas T. Cullen and Virginia Attorney General Mark R. Herring announced.

In a hearing last week, Timothy Terrell Peek, 34, of Union Point, Georgia, was sentenced to 108 months’ incarceration.  He previously pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine, heroin, oxycodone, cocaine, and alprazolam.

Also in recent weeks, Douglas Michael Urnick, 36, of Coeburn, Va., was sentenced to two years in prison; Dale August Leichtenberg, 39, of Saint Charles, Va., was sentenced to 5 months’ incarceration; and Rebecca Owens, 58, of Big Stone Gap, Va., was sentenced to a period of three years’ probation.  Each defendant pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute controlled substances, to include methamphetamine, heroin, oxycodone, and alprazolam.

In all, 11 individuals are charged as part of this drug trafficking conspiracy.  One defendant remains scheduled for sentencing in October 2019.  The two lead defendants are scheduled for trial in September 2019.      

According to court records and evidence presented at previous hearings by Special Assistant United States Attorney and Virginia Assistant Attorney General Suzanne Kerney-Quillen, these defendants conspired to traffic a variety of controlled substances, including methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine, morphine, oxycodone, and alprazolam, from sources in Watkinsville, Athens, and Augusta, Georgia, into Southwest Virginia for redistribution. 

The organization operated primarily in Lee and Wise counties from November 2016 through March 1, 2018. 

Arrests on March 1, 2018, resulted in the seizure of approximately 197 grams of crystal ice methamphetamine, in addition to heroin, cocaine, morphine, and oxycodone, with a street value of nearly $30,000.    

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