(STL.News) – United States Attorney Andrew Birge announced today that eight individuals have been charged in federal court for their involvement in a crystal methamphetamine distribution conspiracy that spanned several cities in western Michigan. During the course of the investigation, which began in December 2019 and continued through October 2020, law enforcement seized over 18 pounds of crystal methamphetamine, two firearms, and over $27,000 in drug proceeds. Six defendants have been arrested; two remain at large.
On October 21 and 22, 2020, Larry James Martz, 51, of Plainwell, Sara Ann Whittemore, 35, of Hopkins, Dwayne Deshaun Parks, 30, of Kalamazoo, Ronald Lee Sutherland, 52, of Allegan, and Charles William-Maurice Hudson, 35, of Battle Creek, were arrested and made their initial appearances in federal court on indictments returned by a federal grand jury. Timothy Mark Calicutt, 50, of Kalamazoo, and Michael Chad Sutherland, 45, of Allegan, were also charged. Calicutt and Michael Chad Sutherland, pictured below, remain at large and law enforcement is soliciting assistance in finding them. All defendants are charged with conspiracy to distribute and
possess with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine, which carries a mandatory minimum period of 10 years in prison and a maximum of life in prison. Michael Chad Sutherland and Calicutt are also facing firearms charges.
Jackie Lee Cherry, Jr., 33, of Muskegon Heights, was arrested on a separate criminal complaint that charges him with possession with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of a mixture and substance containing a detectable amount of methamphetamine. If convicted, Cherry faces a mandatory minimum period of 5 years in prison and a maximum period of 40 years in prison.
The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) in partnership with the Southwest Enforcement Team (SWET) and West Michigan Enforcement Team (WEMET) of the Michigan State Police (MSP) began the investigation into this methamphetamine distribution ring in December 2019. The Department of Justice’s Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) Program, which employs the expertise of the DEA and numerous federal agencies to comprehensively target and dismantle drug trafficking and money laundering organizations, supported this multi-agency investigation. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Dan McGraw.
The charges in an indictment and criminal complaint are merely accusations, and all defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty in a court of law.
Timothy Mark Calicutt, 50, of Kalamazoo, Michigan, wanted on a federal arrest warrant.
Michael Chad Sutherland, 45, of Allegan, Michigan, wanted on a federal arrest warrant.
If members of the public have information that could lead to the arrest of Timothy Mark Calicutt or Michael Chad Sutherland, they are encouraged to call the United States Marshals Service at (616) 456-2438.