Since Charles Daniels, who goes by the street name “Quick,” has been in the Wayne County Jail since April, there has been an apparent decrease in opiate overdoses.
Local organizations and families will see that decrease sustained as Daniels was found guilty Wednesday of charges he was trafficking heroin, fentanyl and carfentanil in Wooster.
Daniels, 39, 7400 Wade Park, Apt. 419, Cleveland rejected a plea deal and moved forward with a trial on charges of trafficking and possession of heroin, aggravated trafficking and possession of drugs, and illegal use/possession of drug paraphernalia.
His sentencing has been scheduled for Oct. 25.
Daniels was arrested April 4 following a search warrant and monthslong investigation into his local activities as the main supplier of heroin and other opiates into Wooster.
Daniels plus three others were arrested at the Econo Lodge hotel on Lincoln Way right outside of Wooster, after investigators observed a suspected drug deal take place between two different rooms at the hotel.
Once inside, with the Wayne County Sheriff’s Special Response Team, approximately 30 grams of opiates in four baggies were discovered, along with smaller amounts of crack cocaine and marijuana, and paraphernalia were located.
Two women believed to be prostitutes were also in the rooms.
On body camera footage played in court, Daniels was heard saying “I don’t keep drugs on me. I’m smarter than that.”
“Are those the words of a man protesting his innocence?” asked Assistant Prosecutor John Williams of the jury in his closing arguments. “Or are those the words of a man taunting police?”
Wooster Police officers Guy Bremenour and Quinn McConnell, who are assigned to Medway and are a part of WPD’s Community Impact Unit, testified to their information gained through the investigation that Daniels was dealing out of the hotel room and supplied product to a known drug house on Spink Street.
And since Daniels was arrested, the amount of opiates flooding into Wooster has slowed, according to local authorities.
“My office had noticed what appeared to be a direct correlation between a reduction in opiate overdose cases and the date Daniels was jailed pending trial,” said Dan Lutz, Wayne County Prosecutor, following the guilty verdict. “So I’m very pleased that Daniels was found guilty on all counts. Hopefully he will be imprisoned for a long time.”
Lutz, along with Medway Drug Enforcement Director Donald Hall, commended the work put in by local law enforcement authorities particularly the Wooster Police Department and Wayne County Sheriff’s Office, but also John Williams who prosecuted the case.
“Wayne County is very fortunate to have such fine law enforcement professionals,” Lutz added.
“It’s a continual game of cat and mouse,” Hall said in congratulating this joint investigation. “This guy was not only affecting people in Wooster, but Wayne County as a whole, because people were coming to that hotel to score drugs ... I feel confident this was responsible for some of the overdoses in the community.”
“I’m just, I’m happy,” said Bremenour, after the verdict.
“We had a formidable opponent. And I thank the jury for their service,” said McConnell.
“This case is another example of the hard work and collaboration that our community impact unit and Medway put into taking drug dealers off the streets of our community,” said Wooster Police Chief Matt Fisher.
After the verdict, Akron-based attorney Eddie Sipplen, who represented Daniels, said he felt confident in the justice system.
“At the end of the day, Mr. Daniels received a fair trial,” said Sipple. “Today’s process just shows (the justice system) works and it’s the best system around. My job is to protect my client’s rights ... but unfortunately the jury saw the facts differently.”
He added that he has advised Daniels to appeal this decision, which cannot officially occur until after his sentencing.
Daniels has a history of drug trafficking dating back at least a decade with multiple convictions in Cuyahoga County.
He also has a pending case in Wayne County Common Pleas Court from a June incident where he allegedly squirted a shampoo bottle filled with urine on a corrections deputy.
Daniels has a pretrial set for Oct. 25 in that case in front of Judge Corey Spitler, who presided over his drug trial as well.
Reporter Steven F. Huszai can be reached at 330-287-1645 or firstname.lastname@example.org. He is @GeneralSmithie on Twitter.