FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 12, 2017
COCAINE DEALER SENTENCED TO 25 YEARS INCARCERATION WITHOUT PAROLE AS A REPEAT OFFENDER
FREDERICK- On July 12, 2017, Defendant Anthony St. Tonio Alston, 47, of Hagerstown, Maryland, appeared before the Honorable Judge John H. Tisdale in the Circuit Court for Frederick County for sentencing on several drug related charges. After a four day trial last February, the Defendant was convicted of two counts of possession with the intent to distribute cocaine, one count of distribution of cocaine in a school zone, two counts of conspiracy to distribute cocaine, and two counts of possession of cocaine. The charges were the result of a long term investigation conducted by the Frederick Police Department’s Drug Enforcement Unit in the winter of 2016. Mr. Alston had been identified as a high volume dealer of cocaine in Frederick. The investigation included court authorization to intercept communications on Mr. Alston’s mobile telephones. Authorities also observed Mr. Alston personally conducting drug transactions. The investigation culminated in a traffic stop on March 8, 2016. Investigators believed that the Defendant was returning from New York where he was believed to source his cocaine. Investigators located over 120 grams of cocaine in Mr. Alston’s shoe.
The State requested a mandatory sentence of 25 years active incarceration in the Division of Correction to be served without parole under Criminal Article 5-608, due to the Defendant’s status as a repeat offender. The State referenced a presentence investigation prepared by the Department of Parole and Probation that recounted 28 years of criminal activity by the Defendant. The State requested an additional 20 year suspended sentence consecutive to the 25 year mandatory sentence.
The Court sentenced the Defendant in accordance with the State’s request.
“We certainly do not obtain enough of these sentences. Unfortunately, it is a rare sentence but one that needs to happen more frequently if we are to send a message to drug dealers,” stated Frederick County State’s Attorney Charlie Smith.
The Court stated that the Defendant was not amenable to rehabilitation, and that the sentence was necessary to protect the public. When the Defendant completes his 25 year sentence, he will then be on five years of supervised probation with an additional 20 year sentence that could be imposed should he violate his probation.
As a result of this investigation, eight people were charged with felony drug offenses. Investigators cite this case as the successful dismantling of a large volume drug trafficking organization in Frederick.
The State was represented by Assistant State’s Attorney Colleen Swanson. The Defendant terminated his attorney in the fall of 2016, and represented himself in the trial and sentencing.
J. Charles Smith, III
State’s Attorney for Frederick County, Maryland