June 09, 2016
Contact: Special Agent Cheryl Davis
Phone Number: (313) 234-4000
Five Ohio Drug Gang Members Convicted Of Murder And Racketeering
Convictions of “Short North Posse” members clear 10 previously unsolved homicides
COLUMBUS, Ohio - A United States District Court convicted five Short North Posse gang members of racketeering and murder today following a two-month trial.
Robert B. Ledbetter, 37, Christopher A. Harris, 28, Rashad A. Liston, 26, Deounte Ussury, 31, and Clifford L. Robinson, 38, all of Columbus, were convicted on all counts, which accounted for 10 previously unsolved homicides. Each defendant faces up to life in prison.
Benjamin C. Glassman, Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, Timothy J. Plancon, Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’(DEA) Detroit Division, Angela L. Byers, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of (FBI), Brad Earman, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and (ATF), Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O’Brien and Columbus Police Chief Kim Jacobs announced the verdict reached today.
The defendants are five of 20 individuals who were indicted in October 2014, in a racketeering case, with charges that include murders, attempted murders, drug trafficking, weapons offenses, extortion and robbery. Of the 20 total defendants, nine have pleaded guilty and one has died. The remaining five defendants are scheduled for trials on July 11 and September 26.
“These five men had perpetuated a multi-generational tradition of terrorizing Columbus neighborhoods through violence and intimidation,” Acting U.S. Attorney Glassman said. “The verdict today has sent a clear message that their reign has ended and such behavior will not go unpunished.”
Acting U.S. Attorney Glassman commended the two-year investigation by numerous federal, state and local law enforcement agencies, and also commended Assistant U.S. Attorneys David DeVillers, Kevin Kelley, Brian Martinez and Jimmy Lowe with Franklin County Prosecutor O’Brien’s Office, who are representing the United States in this and the related cases.