Lynchburg narcotics conspiracy dismantled, ringleader sentenced

Over 150 kilograms of cocaine was brought into the Lynchburg area, valued at over $4.5 million

Gavel. (Generic) (Photo by EKATERINA BOLOVTSOVA)

LYNCHBURG, Va. – The North Carolina source of supply was sentenced to 27.5 years in federal prison after conspiring with dozens of others to distribute narcotics into Lynchburg and the Central Virginia region, according to the Department of Justice.

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Authorities say 45-year-old Jermel Storey, a former Lynchburg resident, pled guilty in July 2022 to the following charges:

  • Conspiring to possess with the intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine
  • Possession with the intent to distribute and distributing cocaine
  • Possession with the intent to distribute and distributing 500 grams or more of cocaine
  • Possession of a firearm (a short-barreled rifle) in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime

Storey was responsible for distributing more than 150 kilograms of cocaine into the Lynchburg area, valued at more than $4.5 million, authorities said.

Court documents show that between Jan. 2016 and Jan. 2021, Storey led a widespread drug trafficking organization that brought large quantities of cocaine into Lynchburg, from Houston, Texas through Charlotte, North Carolina.

After moving to Charlotte, Storey directed co-conspirators to collect drugs to import to Lynchburg for sales across the Central Virginia region, according to authorities.

The DOJ said Storey possessed and used multiple guns to make threats to continue his conspiracy, and also threatened his co-conspirators who did not comply by threatening to harm them and their family members.

“This sentencing should send a clear message to those who prey on our community that their actions will be aggressively investigated and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” said Lynchburg Police Chief Ryan Zuidema. “We know there is a clear connection between drug activity and violent crime, and this sentencing reinforces our community’s unwillingness to tolerate either.  The Lynchburg Police Department recognizes that this outcome would not have been possible without the assistance of our local, state, and federal law enforcement partners.”


About the Author

Lauren Helkowski joined WSLS 10’s digital team in August 2022, but has held a passion for storytelling long before.