Four Charged With Narcotics Distribution in Ocean County

Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer announced that Detectives from the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Narcotics Strike Force collaborated with the Barnegat Township Police Department Crime Reduction Unit, United States Drug Enforcement Agency-Atlantic City Resident Office, Toms River Township Police Department Patrol Division and Street Crimes Unit, Brick Township Police Department Patrol Division and Street Crimes Unit, South Toms River Patrol Division and Detective Bureau, and Ocean County Sheriff’s Office, to conduct a two month-long investigation into the distribution of illegal narcotics in the Ocean County area.  This cooperative, multi-agency investigation identified three residences in Brick, Toms River, and South Toms River, as being utilized by Orthis Allen, 33 of Bayville, Lauren Torres and Anthony Martinez, both 23 and of Toms River, and Ashley Banks, 33, of Brick, for the purpose of distributing ecstasy, cocaine, and heroin/fentanyl in Ocean County.

On February 27, 2024, Detectives from the aforementioned law enforcement agencies established stationary and mobile surveillance on the subject residences. On that date, surveillance units observed Allen and Banks exit the Brick Township residence, enter a 2020 Dodge Durango, and leave the area. A motor vehicle stop was thereafter executed by Officers assigned to the Brick Township Police Department Special Emergency Response Team; Allen and Banks were detained without incident, and ultimately transported to Brick Township Police Headquarters for processing.

Court-authorized search warrants were subsequently executed at the subject residences in Brick, Toms River, and South Toms River. As a result, law enforcement seized 150 suspect ecstasy pills and approximately 41 grams of suspect cocaine from the Brick Township residence. Execution of the search warrant at the Toms River residence resulted in the seizure of 100 wax folds of suspect heroin/fentanyl, 15 suspect ecstasy pills, a digital scale, paraphernalia indicative of drug distribution, and two loaded 9mm firearms – one with a high capacity magazine. Torres and Martinez – who were present at the Toms River residence at the time the search warrant was executed – were transported without incident to Toms River Police Headquarters for processing. The execution of the search warrant at the South Toms River address revealed nothing of evidentiary value.

Allen was charged with Distribution of MDMA, Distribution of Cocaine, Possession of MDMA with Intent to Distribute, Possession of Cocaine with Intent to Distribute, Possession of Heroin with Intent to Distribute, Conspiracy to Possess MDMA with Intent to Distribute, Conspiracy to Possess Cocaine with Intent to Distribute, Conspiracy to Possess Heroin with Intent to Distribute, Possession of MDMA, Possession of Cocaine, Possession of Heroin, Possession of Firearm During the Commission of a Narcotics Offense, Being a Certain Person not to Possess a Weapon, and Possession of High Capacity Magazine. Allen is presently lodged in Ocean County Jail pending a detention hearing.

Torres was charged with Possession of MDMA with Intent to Distribute, Possession of Cocaine with Intent to Distribute, Possession of Heroin with Intent to Distribute, Conspiracy to Possess Heroin with Intent to Distribute, Possession of MDMA, Possession of Cocaine, and Possession of Heroin. Torres was served with the charges via summons pending an upcoming first appearance in Ocean County Superior Court.

Anthony Martinez was charged with Conspiracy to Possess MDMA with Intent to Distribute. Martinez was served with the charges via summons pending an upcoming first appearance in Ocean County Superior Court.

Banks was charged with Possession of MDMA with Intent to Distribute, Possession of Cocaine with Intent to Distribute, Conspiracy to Possess MDMA with Intent to Distribute, Conspiracy to Possess Cocaine with Intent to Distribute, Possession of MDMA, and Possession of Cocaine. Banks was served with the charges via summons pending an upcoming first appearance in Ocean County Superior Court.

Prosecutor Billhimer commends the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Narcotics Strike Force, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Asset Forfeiture Unit, Barnegat Township Police Department, Barnegat Township Police Department Patrol Division, Barnegat Township Police Department Crime Reduction Unit, Barnegat Township Police Department K-9 Unit, Brick Township Police Department Patrol Division, Brick Township Police Department Street Crimes Unit, Brick Township Police Department K-9 Unit, Brick Township Police Department Special Emergency Response Team, South Toms River Police Department Detective Bureau, Toms River Township Police Department Patrol Division, Toms River Township Police Department Special Enforcement Team, Toms River Township Police Department Emergency Services Unit, Ocean County Regional SWAT Team, United States Drug Enforcement Agency-Atlantic City Resident Office, and Ocean County Sheriff’s Office, for their combined and collective assistance in connection with this investigation.

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