DOJ Seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Western District of New York

For Immediate Release

Wednesday, March 2, 2016
William J. Hochul, Jr.
, United States Attorney
Contact: Barbara Burns

Cheektowaga Woman Sentenced on Drug Charge

BUFFALO, N.Y. -U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul Jr. announced today that Ashley Marie Gnocchini, 29, of Cheektowaga, NY, who was convicted of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine, was sentenced to 15 months in prison by U.S. District Judge Elizabeth Wolford.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Mary Catherine Baumgarten, who handled the case, stated that on November 15, 2010, law enforcement officers searched the residence of Ricky Lee Pyzikiewicz on Maurice Street in Buffalo. Officers seized baggies later determined to contain cocaine and marijuana as well as a rifle and ammunition. The search was part of an ongoing criminal investigation into narcotics trafficking by Pyzikiewicz and Gnocchini.

During the morning hours of November 15, 2010, officers set up an undercover purchase with the defendants. As Pyzikiewicz and Gnocchini drove to the area of Milestrip Road and McKinley Parkway in Hamburg, NY, Orchard Park, NY police officers pulled over a gray Saturn Ion the two were riding in. Pyzikiewicz appeared to hide something under his seat. A Hamburg Police Department canine unit responded to the scene, and the ensuing canine sniff was positive for the presence of narcotics. A subsequent search was conducted and quantities of cocaine were recovered.

The sentencing is the result of an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge James J. Hunt, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, under the direction Special Agent in Charge Delano A. Reid, the Orchard Park Police Department, under the direction of Chief Mark Pacholec, and the Hamburg Police Department, under the direction of Chief Gregory Wickett.

Ricky Lee Pyzikiewicz was convicted of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and to distribute cocaine and being felon in possession of a firearm and is scheduled to be sentenced by Judge Wolford on May 4, 2016 at 10:00 a.m.

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New York Field Division