CHARLESTON, W.Va. — U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin said the federal charge Governor Earl Ray Tomblin’s brother is now facing is proof that drug addiction does not discriminate.
“It crosses all socioeconomic lines. It affects every single community and I think, as we’ve noted before, it affects really every family and it affects them very deeply,” said Goodwin on Thursday’s MetroNews “Talkline.”
A day early, he’d announced the filing of a federal information against Carl Tomblin, 50, of Chapmanville who was accused of selling oxymorphone — the generic form of Opana — in Logan County last December.
An information usually indicates a defendant is cooperating.
Gov. Tomblin issued a statement to address the matter earlier this week.
“I am saddened by my brother’s actions and I am disappointed in him, but I love him,” he said. “Like everyone dealing with drug addiction, my brother needs help. I’ve said many times that drug addiction can affect any family and it has affected mine. I thank you for your prayers during this challenging time.”
Goodwin said, unfortunately, this kind of case comes up a lot.
“This is like any drug investigation that we’ve been a part of in Southern West Virginia. My office has prosecuted more than 200 pill dealers over the last couple of years. It’s a terrible, terrible problem for my district and for our state in general,” he said.
“You stop anyone on the street and they’re going to tell you they know someone or someone within their family has been horribly affected by this terrible epidemic and it really is an epidemic.”
Those with the U.S. 119 Task Force and State Police are handling the Carl Tomblin investigation as part of a larger, ongoing prescription drug investigation focused on southern West Virginia.