June 25, 2016

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Drug task force arrests couple in Wadsworth with SWAT assistance

Dan Pompili and Loren Genson | The Gazette

WADSWORTH — Two people were arrested Wednesday after SWAT team members entered a home in the 100 block of First Street at about 2 p.m., according to the Medina County Drug Task Force.

Richard H. Wise, 57, was charged with trafficking in Oxycodone in the vicinity of a juvenile, a third-degree felony punishable by up to five years in prison, and his wife, Donna S. Wise, 57, was charged with permitting drug abuse, a fifth-degree felony that carries a penalty of up to a year in prison.

Donna Wise

Donna Wise

Richard Wise

Richard Wise

Both are free on bond.

The couple’s two adult sons have outstanding warrants on drug-trafficking charges, but they were not at home when the warrant was executed, task force Director Gary Hubbard said.

Hubbard said a 9-year old child lives in the house but agents made sure to execute the warrant while the child was at school.

“We didn’t want to compromise the safety of the child or frighten them by kicking down the door,” he said. “So we’d rather risk the people not being there than jeopardize the well-being or safety of the child.”

Hubbard said the elevated charge against Richard Wise was the result of a drug sale when the child was in the house.

He said there are other charges pending, most of them third- and fourth-degree felonies.

After receiving information from Wadsworth police and complaints about the house, Hubbard said a task-force agent began an investigation. The agent bought Oxycodone at the house, Hubbard said, and Wadsworth Municipal Court Judge Stephen B. McIlvaine signed the search warrant this week.

Hubbard said his office will pass on information to Medina County Job and Family Services concerning the child.

Contact reporter Dan Pompili at (330) 721-4012 or dpompili@medina-gazette.com and reporter Loren Genson at (330) 721-4063 or lgenson@medina-gazette.com.

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The Gazette is Medina County's daily local news source, serving the community since 1832. Contact The Gazette's news department at (330) 721-4065 or areanews@medina-gazette.com.