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DA sees rise in drug trafficking in county

DA sees rise in drug trafficking in county

A pair of drug dealers were sentenced to state prison in Saratoga County Court Friday, according to

A pair of drug dealers were sentenced to state prison in Saratoga County Court Friday, according to District Attorney James Murphy III, who said drug trafficking is on the rise in the county.

Murphy said Greg Hermonstyne, 32, of Malta, and Angelo Rivera, 24, address unknown, were arrested in separate cases, but both were caught selling crack cocaine to police informants.

Hermonstyne was arrested by state police in Malta for drug sales that took place in February. He pleaded guilty to a single charge of criminal possession of a controlled substance, and he was sentenced to 31⁄2 years in prison by Saratoga County Judge Jerry Scarano.

Rivera was arrested in Moreau and sentenced in county court to 21⁄2 years in prison.

Murphy said police are also seeing an increase in the number of heroin sales in the county.

“Heroin is unfortunately cheap and the stigma attached to it is not as bad as it used to be,” he said. “It is available to be smoked, snorted or pushed through a needle, and it is very addictive and changes the brain forever.”

In other drug cases before Scarano:

u Shantik Smith, 30, of the Bronx, pleaded guilty to a felony count of criminal sale of a controlled substance, and he is to be sentenced in December.

u Raheem Thomas, 30, also of the Bronx, was indicted on charges of criminal possession of a controlled substance, and he is being held in the county jail awaiting a court appearance.

u Lee Gross, 31, of Lewisberry, Pa., pleaded guilty to a charge of criminal possession of a controlled substance, and he is to be sentenced in December.

u Ryan Mulligan, 26, of Ballston Lake, pleaded guilty to a charge of attempted criminal sale of a controlled substance, and he is to be sentenced in November.

u Marlin Gilliam, 30, of Troy, pleaded guilty to a charge of criminal possession of a controlled substance, and he is to be sentenced in November.

u Anthony Morgan, 50, of Gansevoort, was indicted on felony charges of driving while intoxicated and aggravated driving while intoxicated.

u Steven Ortiz, 32, of Gansevoort, was sentenced to time served and 5 years of probation after he pleaded guilty to a charge of felony DWI.

u Christian Orologio, 22, of Ballston Spa, will be sentenced Nov. 23 after pleading guilty to a charge of felony DWI.

u John Scensny, 42, of Ballston Spa, pleaded guilty to a charge of felony DWI, and he was sentenced to time served and 5 years of probation.

u John Vance, 24, of Saratoga Springs, was indicted on a charge of third-degree grand larceny, and he is being held in the county jail awaiting arraignment in county court.

u Anthony Bowden, 20, of Ballston Spa, pleaded guilty to a charge of third-degree robbery, and he is to be sentenced in December.

u James Russell Jr., 29, of Waterford, was indicted on charges of forgery, criminal impersonation, criminal possession of a controlled substance and aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle.

u John Batease, 32, of Schuylerville, was sentenced to a year in the county jail after he pleaded guilty to a charge of fourth-degree grand larceny.

u Christopher White, 26, of Whitehall, was sentenced to time served after he pleaded guilty to a charge of first-degree attempted sexual abuse.

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