STODDARD COUNTY, Mo – Stoddard County Prosecuting Attorney Russ Oliver announced today that he will seek reelection to his current position.
“We are very proud of the accomplishments of the Prosecutor’s Office over the last 3 years” Oliver stated. “Every jury trial we conducted resulted in a guilty verdict, we obtained a 50 year sentence for Rape and Burglary against Moses Grayson, we protected the rights of Conceal Carry Permit holders against the encroachment of the Department of Revenue, we ended the synthetic drug epidemic in Stoddard County, and I am honored to be the first area prosecutor to receive an award from the Drug Enforcement Administration for our work on synthetic drugs which ultimately lead to Operation Log Jam which resulted in a nationwide sweep that seized 5 million packets of synthetic drugs and $36 million of drug money”
In each and every jury trial conducted during his term, Oliver obtained a guilty verdict from the jury. “Russ’ jury trial track record has established a reputation for the Prosecutor’s Office in the legal community that not only is Russ willing to try cases to a jury, but should a case go to trial everyone knows that the State will be represented by a competent and effective litigator that can win cases,” said Dexter Attorney Brad Jarrell.
Of all the cases that were submitted to a jury during his term in office, Oliver says the most important was the conviction of a Dexter man, Moses Grayson, who was found guilty of burglarizing a woman’s home in the middle of the night and forcibly raping her. The Defendant was sentenced to 50 years. Oliver said of the verdict and sentence, “Mr. Grayson has two prior victims that he sexually assaulted ten years ago and this case is his third sexual assault victim. There is no question that our community is safer due to the results of this trial”
During his term as Prosecutor, Oliver was appointed by the Speaker of the Missouri House to serve on the House Bi-Partisan Investigative Commission concerning the Missouri Department of Revenue’s violation of Conceal Carry Permit holder’s privacy rights.
The Speaker of the Missouri House, Tim Jones, said of Oliver, “Russ’ efforts exposed the violation of the privacy rights of Conceal Carry Permit holders, as well the rights of all other Missouri citizens, by the Department of Revenue. His work on the Investigative Committee was invaluable and his efforts helped us to pass legislation to protect Conceal Carry Permit holder’s rights in the future.”
Oliver is also pleased with the results of his office’s efforts to end what was described as a ‘synthetic drug epidemic’ that Stoddard County began to experience early in his term of office. Oliver said “we took bold decisive action to eradicate Stoddard County of these synthetic drugs and to send a message that it was not going to be tolerated in this county.” As a result, area law enforcement reports that they only rarely see synthetic use in the county, “we will have the occasional person who is passing through our county that has some of these substances on their person or in their car, but we certainly no longer see the overwhelming influx of these drugs like they have seen in other counties. I think folks know that Stoddard County is just not the place to be doing that stuff” said Stoddard County Sheriff Carl Hefner.
Oliver says that his office worked hand-in-hand with Drug Enforcement Administration in their efforts to combat synthetic drugs. “When we executed the search warrants on Kevin Bay and his businesses in Columbia Missouri, DEA was with us and help put the cases together. The DEA agents saw the impact that these efforts were having on the industry and they began them looking at their options.”
“It was the snowball that got it all started for DEA,” said Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) Regional Supervisory Special Agent Michael Scalise. “Russ’ work was one of the catalysts that initially got DEA’s attention and eventually lead to ‘Operation Log Jam’ in which a nationwide sweep of convenience stores and ‘head-shops’ netted millions of dollars in federal property seizures and thousands of pounds of synthetic drug product.”
Ultimately 11 individuals and 4 businesses were federally indicted as a result of the synthetic drug cases that started in Stoddard County, including Kevin Bay and Bocomo Bay. Nearly $2 million in drug money was seized from Kevin Bay during the execution of a search warrant in Columbia Missouri based on the Stoddard County investigation.
Russ’ wife Jennifer said of the last 3 years, “our family has had to make some sacrifices to allow Russ to serve as prosecutor. But I know that he is making Stoddard County a safer and better place for our two kids to grow up in. His results speak for themselves and I know he is making a real difference.”