12 Local Residents Arrested On Federal Meth Related Charges

April 20, 2013

Twelve local residents — including six from North Escambia — were indicted this week on methamphetamine and pseudoephedrine related conspiracy offenses. These individuals were arrested on federal warrants and most made their initial appearances in United States District Court Friday.

Charged were:  Gregory A. Militello, age 42 of Cantonment; Stephanie Ann Gunderson, age 26 of Cantonment; Shawn Michael King, age 34 of Cantonment; Joseph David Peterson age 33  of Cantonment; Hunter Grant Myrick, age 23 from Cantonment;  and Kirby Brian Smith, age 50 of Molino;  Joshua Paul Militello, age 30 of Pensacola ; Nicole Danielle Jones, age 32 of Pensacola; James E. Atiabi, age 35 of Penacola;  John Wyatt Casey, age 33 of Pensacola;  Jared Luke Hester, age 29 of Pensacola ; and Shannon Lee Hurd, age 29 of Pensacola.

Federal prosecutors say suspects were all were involved in a conspiracy to possess and distribute large amounts of pseudoephedrine in order to manufacture methamphetamine from January 1, 2011, until their arrests. Pseudoephedrine is a chemical used to manufacture methamphetamine. In addition to the twelve individuals arrested on federal warrants, dozens more were arrested on state warrants involving similar alleged activity.

Trial for the federal defendants is set for June, 2013. If convicted at trial, each of the twelve defendants faces up to 20 years imprisonment, three years of supervised release, and up to a $250,000 fine on the conspiracy charged in the indictments. Peterson faces a separate mandatory penalty of 10 years to life imprisonment based upon a charge against him involving the manufacture of methamphetamine.

The indictments result from an investigation by agents of the United States Drug Enforcement Administration, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office, and the State Attorney’s Office.

The names of those arrested on state charges will be published in an additional article.


32 Responses to “12 Local Residents Arrested On Federal Meth Related Charges”

  1. Betty Porz on April 24th, 2013 1:33 am

    I watched a young woman come to the point of death because of drugs…meth being her drug of choice..we talked many times about the hold that meth has on you and…she knows she may die the next time she uses it but she doesn’t care…its that high she wants…no matter the cost. …she is a beautiful woman but has damaged her body beyond repair. I love that sweetness within her and pray she will find her peace with God….she has so much to give in goodness. I haven’t had contact with her in several months…but my love and prayers still fills my heart with hope…ans where there is hope…there is God.

  2. Alan on April 22nd, 2013 6:22 pm

    I just got one of these guys hired on to a real job at Ascend. I deleted his phone number.

  3. BigMeech44 on April 22nd, 2013 1:40 pm

    I personally kno 2 of these guys and i gotta say
    It breaks my heart, i also kno what its like to struggle
    With Addiction. My prayers and love go out to
    Them and there family.

  4. countrygirl34 on April 22nd, 2013 5:55 am

    A year ago, I was in court for this. I started hanging with the wrong group of people and for four months did not know if I was coming or going. I am now away from the area and a year clean. I am working a full time job and with the love of my life. I thank God everyday for the cops showing up at my door that morning. If it would not have happened, I dont know where I would be. I regret my choices all the time, but I dont look back. I onky look foward and pray for these people. I hope this is a wake up call for them, but the sad thing is, they have to want to get help and they have to want to get better.

  5. Love on April 21st, 2013 8:51 pm

    I truly hope that all of these people get the help they so desperatly need…I am proof that prison is not a bad thing…I was in the first bust they had..I just got out on friday and it is the best thing that could of ever happened to me it saved my life… I am keeping their children in my prayers…… to all of their children reading this please understand that addiction is serious and i hope when all of this is said and done you have your parent back and they be a positive part of you life and they are able to over come this… the thing i say everyday to myself is I do not have to let my past determine my future…I made mistakes as well as did they and I hope they take this time to find themselves and get the help they need and sometimes that takes us a little while….God saves the ones He loves… for me prison was Him saving me from my self and the drugs..

  6. Chris on April 21st, 2013 12:26 pm

    Im glad to see it all happen. Yes I know they all have families however, I know a few of them and their just trash. These people have choices and they have made them. Now deal with the consequences. Every one of them is lazy and don’t want to work. I had one of them ride to work with me to help on a weekend to put a little cash in their pocket running a concrete pump and all the kid did was stand around. Hell, he got in the truck drunk with a beer. I was disgusted. And in response to one of the responses above, I know your dad may have been a good guy at one time, but he didn’t get caught up with the wrong people, HE WAS THE ONE MAKING IT SO HE INFLUENCED THEM, boo hoo.
    Im so scared of the world I will live in when im ready to retire.Every generation has said it before but this is different. When corporal punishment was taken out of the school system, the world started going to crap. Things that were once taboo are now cool. There are no more values, morals, or character in people anymore. Technology and the govt. are dumbing us down. The game consoles, myface, and spacebook are making us stupid and antisocial. Im afraid my kids may melt if the go outside. Then you have DCF and the Feds taking away our freedoms little by little until eventually we’ll look around and they’ll be gone. They have raped and perverted the constitution to what suits them for control over us. Everyone takes the news as gospel yet they receive their info from the govt. how ridiculous. And these arrests are just a product of this ugly world we live in. Most of these people come from good upbringings yet look at them now. If you met them in a grocery would you have anything in common with them? And if you know them look at their appearance as compared to 4-5 years ago. Remarkable. This country used to be so great but it has changed greatly. I used to be proud to be an American but not anymore. You may say get out, well, if I had the means to I would. I blame those who came here to exploit this nation instead of embracing it. These arrests are just the product of our once great place to live.

  7. Donna bush on April 21st, 2013 12:12 pm

    Yes names of all aren’t in here.meth is a dangerous drug period!!! Someone making it and messes up can blow your whole neighborhood up.if marijuana was legal the crimes and harder drug use would go down. Vote for legalization of marijuana … Drugs kill/ alcohol kills / pills kill !!! Vote for free the weed and live in harmony

  8. puddin on April 21st, 2013 7:27 am

    And yet the one methlab on Pineville rd smokes on. Ive been calling for ten years about the odor from that place. The kids reek of it. Yet it goes on. Strange.

    Well, at least they got a few more off the streets and into the jail to become additional burdens to society.

  9. David Huie Green on April 20th, 2013 4:31 pm

    “This story is just as heartbreaking as The Boston and Texas stories to me! ”

    Maybe to you, but to me, the ones in Boston and Texas were trying to help others or minding their own lawful business.
    These were charged with manufacturing mind altering poison and breaking the law.
    If any were falsely arrested, they are deserving of pity.
    That the others took this path is sad, but not as sad as being randomly slaughtered.

    David for better people

  10. Sad but true on April 20th, 2013 10:46 am

    I think in life people make their own choices. I am sure no one forced these people to do anything that they didn’t want to do. Whether they were getting high and caught up by association or selling it/making it, it was still their choice. My brother is up there and I think that this arrest may be the best thing for him. I hope this is a wake up call for him. I have to say it shocked me to see him involved in something like this. I never would have thought this in a million years. I am proud of the DEA for their hard work in getting these guys busted and hopefully off the streets for good.

  11. Mallery on April 20th, 2013 9:06 am

    I hope these people get the help they need. Plenty of my friends though, have faltered due to this devilish drug. A Big Thank You to the authorities!!

  12. CW on April 19th, 2013 11:45 pm

    It used to be Sudafed the meth addicts were after, but now they use lithium batteries and lye drain cleaner. I work in a store that sells the drain cleaner and we have to hide the stuff.

  13. Molino mom on April 19th, 2013 11:32 pm

    Drugs are going to be the death of this world! Everyone in this story is old enough to know better. Its is 100% choice. I understand kids are going to try things but you have to grow up one day and be responsible. Hopefully they will do their time and come out as adults but sadly most won’t. Most will get out and return to their old ways while sucking the life out of their families and people who care. Molino used to be full of country kids with values but its full of mostly thugs now. Im almost embarrassed to say I live here. Hopefully they will keep arresting all the druggies so hard working honest people can have their town back!!!

  14. Northend resident on April 19th, 2013 9:32 pm

    Thank you to all law enforcement involved in helping the war on drugs. It is not taken for granted. May God bless and protect you each day you go out.

  15. cindy diamond on April 19th, 2013 9:29 pm

    There’s absolutely nothing funny about this story. People go down the wrong road all the time! I’ve been on the family side of this story before. It took time in prison for my loved one to get it but thank God they are doing great today! This story is just as heartbreaking as The Boston and Texas stories to me! Evil is definately umong us!

  16. Just saying on April 19th, 2013 8:57 pm

    There is always a family behind busts like this that is left behind hurt. Yes it is a good thing that these people are off the streets and hopefully they get help but speaking from experience my fathers up there and he wasn’t always a bad guy… great father caught up with the wrong people. Rude comments don’t hurt him. They hurt the family that is dealing with this! This site is to inform people! Not to bash people because they sin differently than you…my only hope is they get help!

  17. hah on April 19th, 2013 8:40 pm

    About time they did something with joseph peterson. As soon as he got out a few weeks ago he was back doing it. He will never learn., hopefully they wont let him staright back out again

  18. William on April 19th, 2013 8:23 pm

    >>Not all arrested are listed or shown here.

    This is a complete list of those arrested on FEDERAL charges. There were 40-something more arrested on STATE charges. They will be listed in a different story.

  19. dwbauer on April 19th, 2013 6:29 pm

    Not all arrested are listed or shown here. Looks like they need to add a few more to the list.
    Good clean up , keep up the good work

  20. Craig Macks on April 19th, 2013 5:21 pm

    People make mistakes..I could careless for 11 of these individuals but one means alot to me.
    I hope that this opens her eyes.

  21. paul on April 19th, 2013 4:42 pm

    @Renee.. They were proud to still have their teeth.. :)

  22. Anna on April 19th, 2013 4:35 pm

    sad to see people i went to school with mess up their life so bad to result to this.

  23. Resident on April 19th, 2013 4:00 pm

    Been here before huh, Kirby? Is it really worth it?

  24. mandy on April 19th, 2013 3:42 pm

    SO I wonder if one made a deal to get out of this one…just thinking if one would tell on their sister…

  25. CD on April 19th, 2013 3:21 pm

    Glad these freaks and losers are off the streets……..for a while anyway.

  26. No Excuses on April 19th, 2013 2:49 pm

    @ Renee,

    They are smiling because they are so high they don’t realize the severity of what’s going on.

  27. Jack Johnson on April 19th, 2013 2:43 pm

    The collective IQ of our jail just fell off a cliff. Goodbye you bunch of dirt merchants!

  28. Renee on April 19th, 2013 1:51 pm

    Why on earth would you smile for this!

  29. emmu on April 19th, 2013 1:50 pm

    I will say doing a good job on catching the junkies. I know there are a select few that got in with the wrong people and got caught up in all this, and I am praying for you guys hope this a lesson. Learned.

  30. Henry on April 19th, 2013 1:37 pm

    Well, there goes both my weekend and the North Escambia economy…

  31. BARBARA DYCUS on April 19th, 2013 1:35 pm

    Now arent they a lively bunch. Guess they’ll just have a good time in jail now.

  32. TopseyKretts on April 19th, 2013 1:30 pm

    When will you people learn? Meth is the Devil! You all deserve what you get and I hope the ECSO and the DEA catch every single one of you. Get these junkies off our streets and away from our kids!!!!

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