Misty Croslin appears before Judge Charles Tinlin at the St. Johns County jail during her first appearance for felony drug trafficking charges Thursday morning.
The father and former stepmother of missing Putnam County girl Haleigh Cummings are back in trouble, this time on charges of trafficking in controlled prescription medications.
Ronald Cummings, Misty Croslin, Hank "Tommy" Croslin Jr., Hope A. Sykes and Donna M. Brock, were arrested Wednesday night following a month-long undercover investigation led by the Putnam County Sheriff's Office, according to a news release issued just after 11 p.m. by the agency.
An undercover officer purchased large quantities of Oxycodone and Hydrocodone seven times in Putnam and St. Johns counties, the release said. The estimated street value of the drugs is $3,900.
Cummings and Misty Croslin were arrested Wednesday after prescription medications were purchased from investigators. The others were arrested on warrants, according to the news release.
Misty Croslin, 18, faces six counts of trafficking in prescription medications, while Ronald Cummings, 26, is charged with three counts. Hank Croslin Jr., who is Misty's brother, Sykes and Brock each face one count of trafficking in prescription medications. All but Brock are from Satsuma. Brock is from Orlando and was with Misty when they were pulled over in October in Central Florida accused of road rage. Sykes is Cummings' cousin.
Misty Croslin and Hank Croslin Jr. are in the St. Johns County jail; Ronald Cummings is in the Flagler County jail. Misty Croslin is being held on $950,000 bail; Cummings, $500,000; Brock, $250,000; Sykes, $150,000; and Hank Croslin Jr., $100,000.
Ronald Cummings, Misty Croslin and Donna Brock face minimum mandatory sentences of 25 years in state prison if convicted. The others face minimum sentences ranging from three years to 15 years in state prison.
The Croslins had a brief court appearance in St. Johns County this morning. Judge Charles Tinlin asked whether she could afford an attorney, and she said she already had one. Cummings was in court in Flagler County.
Cummings and his former wife had been seeing each other occasionally and were to meet Wednesday about 5 p.m.after he finished working at a tree trimming job, his mother, Teresa Neves, said.
She said she believes her son and niece were staying in contact with Misty Croslin in the hopes of learning what happened to Haleigh.
"They didn't see a lot of each other," she said.
She said she believes the arrest of her former daughter-in-law could mean a break in the case.
"I think she will talk with the hopes of getting out," Neves said.
She believes Misty Croslin's bail was set purposely high to keep her locked up.
"Maybe she'll flip and tell us where Haliegh is," she said. "That is the only [good] thing that can come out of this."
She said she did not know the roles all those who were arrested played in the drug case but thinks Misty Croslin was at it's center.
"He shouldn't have been talking to Misty Croslin," she said. "She brought his butt into this."
She said early Thursday it was unlikely that the family would be able to afford a bond to release Cummings, but plans to mark the year anniversary of Haleigh's disappearance were still going forward.
"Hopefully Misty will talk and Haleigh will come home," she said.
She said Cummings son Ronald Jr. is staying with Neves' mother.
"He's doing very well," she said.
Cummings is the father of 6-year-old Haleigh, who disappeared in early 2009 and has not been found. Misty Croslin, who was the last person to see Haleigh before she disappeared, later married Cummings, but the two divorced months later.
Putnam authorities did not comment on how the arrests may affect the investigation into Haleigh's disappearance, but the news release indicated those now in jail may be further interviewed in the case.
"As stated in previous releases, investigators assigned to the Haleigh Cummings investigation will take every available opportunity to speak with any individual believed to have knowledge about Haleigh Cummings' disappearance," the release said.
Misty Cummings appears before judge | StAugustine.com