GALLIPOLIS, Ohio – A Cincinnati, Ohio man has been sentenced to a total of 33 years in prison by Judge Margaret Evans.
Antonio D. McIntosh, 37, of Cincinnati, Ohio appeared in court with this attorney, Isabella Dixon. McIntosh was sentenced just one day after he was found guilty on multiple charges by a Gallia County Jury following a three-day trial. The jury deliberated about two and half hours before returning the guilty verdicts on 10 counts. He had been facing 35 years in prison, but two 12 month sentences are to be served concurrently while the rest are “stacked” to serve consecutively.
McIntosh also known by the street name of “T.O.” was considered a ring leader of a drug ring that utilized hand signals to the preference of drug the buyer wanted, according to testimony given during the trial. McIntosh operated a pool hall just outside of Gallipolis.
According to statements made by agents with the Gallia-Meigs Major Crimes Task Force, and witnesses, drug users would come into the pool hall, place money in a ceramic football and then make a hand gesture signifying the type of drugs they wanted to purchase. Users had to have an “introduction” before they could buy drugs. Drugs sold included crystal meth, crack cocaine and heroin. A buyer placed money in the football bowl, indicated by hand signal what drug to purchase, one person would prepare the order, and another would physically remove the money from the bowl. The order would then be placed on a speaker for the drug user to pick up. All of this activity was under the direction of McIntosh according to the state’s case. McIntosh took over the operation allegedly after Porter Mitchell left off operations following the execution of a search warrant in 2013 in a joint effort with multiple law enforcement agencies. Mitchell’s case is still ongoing. Several others connected to the pool hall are still in the court system as their cases progress. Stanley Helms, characterized as an “assistant” in drug operations under McIntosh is serving a prison sentence for his involvement following a plea agreement worked out under the previous Gallia County Prosecutor Jeff Adkins.
For sentencing, some of the counts were merged as they related to the same incident. McIntosh was convicted on one count each of: Trafficking in Cocaine, a felony of the fifth degree; Complicity to Trafficking in Cocaine, a felony of the fifth degree; Possession of Cocaine, a felony of the fifth degree; Possession of Cocaine, a felony of the first degree; Possession of Heroin, a felony of the second degree; Aggravated Possession of Methamphetamine, a felony of the third degree; Trafficking in Cocaine, a felony of the first degree; Trafficking in Heroin, a felony of the second degree; Aggravated Trafficking in Methamphetamine, a felony of the third degree; and Engaging in a Pattern of Corrupt Activity, a felony of the first degree.
McIntosh had previously been convicted on various charges including attempted robbery and several drug charges. McIntosh was not a drug user, but a dealer according to Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Jeremy Fisher when he presented the state’s case at sentencing and requested Judge Evans impose the maximum sentence. McIntosh has served about 11 years of prison previously in both state and federal prisons in Ohio and West Virginia. At the time the case broke open in 2015, McIntosh was on probation following an early release from federal prison in West Virginia.
“I ask this court what defender is worthy of consecutive maximum sentences more,” Fisher said and added that McIntosh was “someone higher up the chain.”
“I hope the message is becoming clear,” Gallia County Prosecuting Attorney Jason Holdren said following the sentencing that drug would not be tolerated in Gallia County. He said with the efforts of law enforcement, his office and the courts, dealers should take not of what he called a “zero tolerance policy.”
McIntosh was visibly upset and tears were visible at various times during the proceedings. His sister spoke on his behalf requesting leniency from Judge Evans prior to sentencing. Ghitana McIntosh told the court her family was “shocked” by case as McIntosh was a “family man.” She told of his efforts to help various family members and that he was a major role in some of his nieces and nephews lives. “This is a total shock,” she said adding, “Give him a little leniency. This is not him, not him at all.” She ended with asking Judge Evans to give him “just one chance.”
McIntosh was given the opportunity to speak on his own behalf prior to sentencing. He said began saying he apologized, but began going on about the case. “I’m here today with my life on the line,” he said for something he didn’t do.
McIntosh went on to say that he was innocent of the charges he was convicted of and that the witnesses lied about him in court. He said law enforcement never asked him about anything. “Why do I have to face 35 years,” he asked commenting that law enforcement should “go about your job the right way” adding that he was “not guilty of selling nothing to that man.”
Fisher was given the opportunity to comment following McIntosh’s address to the court. Fisher stated McIntosh’s purpose for being in the county was to operate the drug ring, “That’s why he was in Gallia County.”
Fisher also noted that the state took a “a little bit of offense” at the attempt of McIntosh to argue his innocence and the statements McIntosh made about law enforcement.
Judge Evans handed down her decision and Dixon said they would be filing an appeal while also requesting the Ohio State Public Defender’s Office be appointed to represent McIntosh going forward.
Part of the evidence McIntosh contested was the estimated $12,000 worth of drugs found wrapped in plastic and inside of black socks. Partial DNA evidence was found on the sock belonging to McIntosh. The drugs were discovered outside of McIntosh’s home on Hubbard Avenue by law enforcement following the execution of search warrant. According to prosecutors during the case the odds are better for someone to win the Mega Millions lottery jackpot seven times than for the DNA not to belong to McIntosh.
McIntosh was taken directly into custody and processing to begin serving his 33 year sentence.
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