Deal offered to Lima man facing multiple drug charges

LIMA — A proposed plea deal offered to an alleged Lima drug dealer that includes a 22-year prison sentence is not likely to be accepted, the defendant’s attorney said during a hearing Thursday in Allen County Common Pleas Court.

Kyle Smith, 38, of Lima, was indicted by a grand jury in March on charges of possession of a fentanyl-related compound and engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, both first-degree felonies; the illegal manufacture of drugs and aggravated possession of drugs, both second-degree felonies; and having weapons under disability, a third-degree felony.

A proposal put on the official court record Thursday by Allen County Chief Assistant Prosecutor Kyle Thines calls for Smith to plead guilty to possession of a fentanyl-related compound, aggravated possession of drugs and engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity. The remaining counts and specifications included in the indictment would be dismissed. As part of the agreement, Smith would receive a 22-year prison sentence, with 11 of those years mandatory.

The offer remains open until June 6, Thines said.

Defense attorney Steve Chamberlain of the Allen County Public Defenders Office said his client’s response to that offer “is probably going to be a ‘no.’” Chamberlain noted that Smith has not waived his right to a speedy trial and does not intend to do so.

According to court records, members of the West Central Ohio Crime Task Force and the Allen County Sheriff’s Office SWAT team on Feb. 1 served a search warrant on a home at 1912 E. Elm St., Lima. Smith was the lone occupant of the dwelling.

During a search of the residence, several items of suspected narcotics and a firearm were located. Two bags of suspected fentanyl were located on the nightstand next to Smith.

A field test determined the substance to be approximately 45 grams of a fentanyl-based narcotic, court documents state.

Chamberlain filed a motion last month, asking the court to exclude from evidence at trial any and all evidence obtained from the search of the Elm Street residence.

Chamberlain in his motion stated that Smith has a constitutional guarantee to “a legitimate expectation of privacy” and maintained that the judge who issued the search warrant did not have a “substantial basis” for determining that probable cause existed to search the home.

Another defense motion sought to quash statements made by Smith to investigators following his arrest. Chamberlain claims his client was not advised of his right to remain silent or his right to have an attorney present during questioning.

Those issues will be addressed at a June 13 pretrial hearing if Smith rejects the state’s plea offer.