‘Bubba’ the meth kingpin and others head to prison in major bust

Walter Lee “Bubba” Williams
Walter Lee “Bubba” Williams

A Middle Georgia meth distribution ring has been broken after the arrests of a dozen people.

Lizella kingpin Walter Lee “Bubba” Williams, 40, will spend 16 years and eight months in prison after Tuesday’s federal sentencing, according to a news release from the Middle District of Georgia.

Williams pleaded guilty in December to conspiracy to possess and distribute meth after the investigation involving the Drug Enforcement Administration, GBI and sheriff’s offices in Bibb, Houston and Peach counties.

Peach County Sheriff Terry Deese said the arrests might not stop the the flow of meth, but it will slow it down.

“Bubba has been a major supplier in the Middle Georgia area for some time,” Deese said in the release. “It will take a while for someone else to come in and set up a network such as the one we have just dismantled.”

More than 10 pounds of d-methamphetamine hydrochloride, or ice, was seized in the investigation that began in April 2016.

Robert J. Murphy, special agent in charge of the Atlanta field division of the DEA, said the substance is “volatile and toxic.”

“The cocktail of deadly chemicals used to manufacture methamphetamine is a recipe for disaster,” Murphy said.

Through the interception of wire and electronic messages, investigators determined Williams was buying large quantities of meth and marijuana from a supplier near Atlanta and distributing it from his Lizella home before he was arrested in October 2016.

Between last fall and this spring, 10 other people pleaded guilty in the case.

The following people pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute meth:

  • Layla Keaney, 38, of Gray, sentenced to 18 months in prison

  • Bobby Martinez, 28, of East Point, sentenced to five years probation

  • Antonio Mendez-Ramos, 33, of Jonesboro and Mexico, sentenced to 17 years and six months in prison

  • Ruben Perez, 32, of Covington, sentenced to 20 years in prison

  • Ashlee Shaw, 29, of Lizella, sentenced to 10 years in prison

  • Shana Walker, 33, of Macon, sentenced to eight years and one month in prison

The following people pleaded guilty to other charges:

  • Danna Stokes, 38, of Bonaire, pleaded guilty to use of communications facility in causing or facilitating the commission of felonies under the controlled substances act, sentenced to one year and one day in prison

  • Milton Dobbin Evans, 66, of Macon, pleaded guilty to use of communications facility in causing or facilitating the commission of felonies under the controlled substances act, sentenced to four years in prison

  • James “Flip” Howell, 28, of Macon, pleaded guilty to distribution of methamphetamine, sentenced to 12 years and seven months in prison

  • Chadwick Nicholson, 41, of Lizella, pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute marijuana, sentenced to five years of probation

Russell Todd Mathis, 45, of Warner Robins stood trial this summer and was found guilty June 6 of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and possession with the intent to distribute methamphetamine. He is set to be sentenced Sept. 16.

U.S. Attorney Charles Peeler pledged to actively pursue those dealing methamphetamine in the Middle District of Georgia.

“Methamphetamine continues to be one of the most destructive drugs in our district,” Peeler said in the release. “It not only ruins the lives of those who choose to use it and choose to deal it, it also affects families, law enforcement, health care providers, governments and citizens across our district.”