Springfield ‘mule’ in largest black tar heroin bust sent to prison

Staying with the story

The Springfield News-Sun first broke the news in June about the bust that netted the largest seizure of black tar heroin in Southwest Ohio and has closely tracked the case since then, including stories about indictments and one of the men pleading guilty.

A Springfield man will spend a decade behind bars for his part in a Springfield drug bust that resulted in one of the largest seizures of black tar heroin in Southwest Ohio.

Two other alleged players in the Clark County drug trafficking case are awaiting trial.

Harry Dixon, 62, of 604 Tibbetts Ave., pleaded guilty in a Clark County Common Pleas Court last month to several drug charges.

>>RELATED: 3 indicted in Springfield black tar heroin case

A judge sentenced Dixon on Friday morning to spend 10 years in prison on a charge of trafficking heroin, 10 years for possession of heroin and 18 months for possession of a stolen firearm, Clark County Assistant Prosecutor Ryan Saunders said.

The prison times will run concurrently for a total of 10 years in prison, Saunders said.

Dixon was a “mule” who sold drugs in Springfield and Clark County, Springfield police said at the time of his June 8 arrest. The alleged ringleader of the drug ring was Brian Lewis, Police Chief Stephen Moody has said.

The next court hearings for Lewis are scheduled in November. He faces charges of trafficking in heroin, possession of heroin, trafficking in marijuana, possession of marijuana, having weapons while under disability and aggravated possession of drugs, according to court records.

>>MORE CRIME COVERAGE: Springfield brothers accused of selling drugs near preschool

Debra Mitchell, 56, of Whitehall, is Lewis’ mother and has also been indicted on charges of possession of heroin and aggravated possession of drugs in the case.

The trio have been accused of being part of a network that brought large amounts of heroin and other drugs like marijuana into Springfield, Moody said. The chief has described Lewis as a “major player” in drug crimes in Springfield.

Springfield detectives had been building a case against Lewis since 2014, Moody has said.

During a June 8 traffic stop and a search of Dixon’s home on Tibbetts Avenue, police alleged they discovered nearly one kilo of black tar heroin — the most of that kind of drug law enforcement in Southwest Ohio has found, Moody said. They also confiscated 800 grams of heroin and about 5.4 pounds of marijuana.

When police searched Dixon’s Tibbetts Avenue home after his arrest, they said they also found more drugs, apparent equipment to sell drugs and firearms, according to court records. One of the guns was found to be a weapon stolen from a Vandalia gun store in November during a rash of gun-shop break-ins last year, prosecutors said.

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