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Man whose home was site of double murder headed for Sept. trial on drug charges

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Dean Smoronk (Virginia State Police/2017 photo)

CONCORD - The presiding judge in the upcoming drug trafficking trial of a Farmington man whose home was the site of a grisly double homicide in 2017 granted a defense motion on Friday to continue the case until September.

Dean Smoronk, 58, formerly of 979 Meaderboro Road, who was named in a January indictment, is accused of trafficking in five grams or more of methamphetamine, or "ice" in July 2018.

Smoronk was taken into custody in December on a charge of being a felon in possession of a firearm as part of a Strafford County drug sweep. He was accused of trying to sell a Sig Sauer P-320 9 mm originally stolen out of Milton.

Prosecutors in the case, however, never sought an indictment on the gun charge, instead indicting both Smoronk and an accomplice, Laurel Bennett, aka Laurel Cole, no age or address given, in the meth case.

The trial was to have begun June 18, but has been postponed several times, something Assistant U.S. Attorney Seth R. Aframe said is not unusual.

The Rochester Voice could not immediately confirm any further information on Bennett's, hometown or age.

Smoronk's 979 Meaderboro Road home was the site of the double stabbing deaths of Smoronk's longtime girlfriend, Christine Sullivan, 48; and an acquaintance of hers, Jenna Pellegrini, 32, of Barrington, who were both killed early the morning of Jan. 27, 2017, police say.

Autopsies revealed Sullivan had a fractured skull and was stabbed in the neck and lungs, while Pellegrini had been stabbed in the neck, torso and back 43 times.

Smoronk discovered the bodies upon his return from Florida on Jan. 28, 2017. He has never been implicated in the killings, however he does have a record of drug involvement, including the arrest in South Carolina with his now-deceased girlfriend in 2014; and in June 2017 when he was arrested on Interstate 95 in Virginia for drug possession.

He returned to New Hampshire a year ago after his release from a Virginia jail.

Smoronk's alleged involvement in the drug trafficking subculture surfaced during a bail hearing for the women's alleged killer in September 2017 when a New Hampshire Police detective noted the extent of Smoronk's drug interest and alleged ties to drug cartels, gangs, motorcycle clubs and a host of dealers and users both in Farmington and Florida where he owned a home in Cape Coral.

Smoronk was most recently arrested on Dec. 20 for allegedly being in possession of a firearm by a prohibited person and possession of a stolen firearm as part of a drug sweep throughout the Greater Rochester area.

A week later at a probable cause hearing in U.S. district court it was determined he should be held without bail. He continues to be held at undisclosed location, prosecutors have said.

Barrett remains free pending trial. Barrett's and Smoronk's trial will be held in U.S. District Court in Concord.

In April 2017 the state of New Hampshire declared Smoronk a known drug dealer as part of its effort to seize more than $14,000 in cash from Smoronk's Farmington home. That petition was tossed out of court because the state was somehow unable to get the forfeiture petition to Strafford County Superior Court on time.

Meanwhile, Timothy Verrill, 36, of Dover, the man accused in the deaths of Sullivan and Pellegrini and said to be a longtime friend of Smoronk's, is expected to have his murder trial in October at Strafford County Superior Court.

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