Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Local News

August 11, 2013

Ex-APD officer to be sentenced Monday

ASHLAND — By KENNETH HART

The Independent

ASHLAND A former Ashland Police Department officer who pleaded guilty in May to federal drug charges is scheduled to be sentenced on Monday.

Sentencing for Melvin Charles “JR” Schoch Jr., 32, is scheduled for 10 a.m. before U.S. District Judge David L. Bunning.

Schoch pleaded guilty to two counts of a superseding indictment returned in January — attempting to possess oxycodone with intent to distribute and possessing a firearm during the commission of a drug crime. Two other counts were dismissed under the terms of Schoch’s plea agreement.

The firearms charge carries a mandatory minimum sentence of five years. The attempted possession charge carries maximum term of 20 years. However, federal sentencing guidelines will likely place Schoch’s term for that offense in the range of either 10 to 16 months or 12 to 18 months. There is no parole in the federal system.

The charges against Schoch stem from a home-invasion burglary that occurred in Boyd County in either May or June of 2009, according to Schoch’s plea agreement.

In pleading guilty, Schoch admitted he and his co-defendant, Ellis Pittman, and another man conducted surveillance on the home of an individual they believed to be in possession of a large quantity of oxycodone pills and a substantial amount of cash made from the illegal sale of narcotics.

Later, the three returned to the residence and “engaged in a home invasion ... to steal oxycodone pills and/or drug proceeds.” Schoch — who was on duty at the time and was in uniform and carrying his duty weapon, a Glock .40-caliber semi-automatic pistol — provided P.S. and Pittman with “police tactical equipment” and  “entered the home under the guise of serving a search warrant,” records state.

No search warrant had been issued for the home. At his rearraignment, Schoch, who joined the Bradenton, Fla., Police Department in October, told Bunning he went into the residence looking only for money and not for pills. However, Schoch admitted he knew the others were seeking drugs and that he had assisted them in doing so.

Neither cash nor pills were found in the residence, according to court records.

Several of Schoch’s family members and friends wrote letters to Bunning urging him to show leniency for the former officer, whom they describe in the letters as a decent man and a devoted father to two young children.

Schoch’s father, Melvin C. Schoch of Rush, said in his letter he believed his son’s crime stemmed from his family being in dire financial straits due to his wife’s pill addiction. He said his son was forced numerous times to borrow money from him because of his wife overdrawing the couple’s joint checking account.

“He made a mistake, a very stupid mistake,” the elder Schoch wrote. “All because he wanted so desperately to make things work with his marriage and family without asking for anymore help.”

 Another letter came from Patricia Johnson, a fourth grade teacher in Manatee County, Fla., who had Schoch’s 10-year-old son, Chase, as a pupil this past school year.

“It is very clear to me from my conversations with both Mr. Schoch and his son ... that Mr. Schoch is a very caring and devoted parent,” she wrote. “He has been the stability in Chase’s life and that has unfortunately been taken away from Chase.

“People make mistakes and people change. I believe Mr. Schoch is a very serious and caring person ... a good person who can lead a productive life, be a good citizen and guide his son to do the same.”

KENNETH HART can be reached at khart@dailyindependent.com or (606) 326-2654.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • Tensions rise among city commission members

    The controversy about City Manager Ben Bitter’s moving expenses revealed a division in the Ashland Board of City Commissioners.

    July 29, 2014

  • ambulance.jpg Ambulance flips on Winchester

     One minor injury was reported after a passenger car collided with an ambulance at the intersection in front of the Paramount Arts Center on Winchester Avenue around 10 a.m. Tuesday. Independent videographer Adam Black witnessed the accident and reported the ambulance was traveling south of Winchester with lights on and siren activated when it was struck in the rear quarter panel by a passenger vehicle that had a green light for the intersection and failed to yield for the emergency vehicle.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0730Grimes_080.jpg Grimes campaign comes to Lexington

    A recent poll that has twice previously shown Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes with a slim lead over incumbent Republican U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell now has McConnell up by two points.

    July 29, 2014 3 Photos

  • U.S. 60 yard sale will be Friday and Saturday

    Bringing bargain shoppers from miles around, the U.S. 60 Yard Sale officially begins Friday morning in Carter County.

    July 29, 2014

  • John Cannon: Bracing to stand on her own 2 feet: 7/30/14

    My youngest granddaughter, who will turn 5 on Sept. 2, has been fitted with a pair of ankle braces to help prevent her from falling down so often.

    July 29, 2014

  • War firearms demo set

    A few of the most devastating and accurate firearms used in conflicts ranging from the Civil War to world wars will be demonstrated for an audience limited to about 40 during an upcoming event sponsored by the Eastern Kentucky Military Historical Society.

    July 29, 2014

  • Lawmaker pays tribute to late WWII veteran

    July 29, 2014

  • Local briefs: 7/30/14

    The Carter County Sheriff's Department charged an Olive Hill man Thursday with trafficking in a controlled substance in the first degree.

    July 29, 2014

  • OLBH receives Quest Award

    Our Lady of Bellefonte Hospital has been honored by Premier Inc. with a Quest Award for High-value Healthcare Citation of Merit for delivering high-quality, cost-effective health care.

    July 29, 2014

  • 0730Grimes_406.jpg Grimes bus tour gets rousing sendoff

    A recent poll,which has twice previously shown Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes with a slim lead over incumbent Republican U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell, now has McConnell up by two points.

    July 29, 2014 3 Photos

Featured Ads
Seasonal Content
AP Video
Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast New Sanctions on Key Sectors of Russian Economy Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP basketball
SEC Zone