Daniel Zimnikov via Daily News
Don’t let the wooden cane and graying hair fool you: This granny was all gangster.
Diminutive Doris Smith, 72, confessed Wednesday to helping her son-in-law run a $1 million-a-year Harlem drug ring by using her tony Manhattan co-op as a stash house for PCP, crack and heroin.
The family matriarch — known among her drug pals as “Mama Dot” — was twice caught on wiretaps warning the son-in-law, gang kingpin Lamont (Big Bro) Moultrie, 42, that cops were inside the building at 101 W. 115th St.
“I’ve listened to the wiretaps,” Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Edward McLaughlin told Smith’s attorney. “Your client was quite involved. She knew what was going on, and tried to deflect the police.”
The short, heavyset grandmother of seven — and great-grandmother of one — pushed up her eyeglasses to wipe away tears while admitting her pivotal role in the lucrative dope-peddling business.
Smith, as co-op board president, held a key to the basement and a vacant third-floor apartment next door to where she lived with her daughter Nicole McNair Moultrie and son-in-law Lamont. The basement of the six-story building was used to store hundreds of heroin-filled packets and dozens of plastic bags loaded with crack.
The heroin was marketed under the brand name “24,” and a stamp with that number was kept downstairs.
The upstairs apartment served as the heart of the PCP trade, with gang underlings dipping spearmint leaves into 5-gallon cans of the liquid drug.
The angel dust-laced leaves were then sold for $10 apiece by dealers at three open-air Harlem drug markets — earning the gang its nickname, the “Kings of Dust.”
Lamont Moultrie and his kid brother Bernard (Little Bro) Moultrie, 39, were charged as the heads of the drug gang and are awaiting trial under the state’s “Drug Kingpin” statute.
They were arrested in January along with 33 other suspects, including Nicole McNair Moultrie, 41. The busts, with police executing 20 search warrants, capped a 15-month investigation.
Smith’s grandson, 11, lived in the apartment with his drug-slinging parents and his grandma, neighbors said.
Doris Smith, in addition to providing access to the building, served as an early-warning system for arriving police, wiretaps indicated. When police entered the building last Jan. 12, the retired Bellevue Hospital nurse immediately dialed her son-in-law’s phone.
“Speaking in a hushed voice, she told Lamont where the police were and how he could leave the building to avoid them,” court papers said.
Smith was arrested in February and held at Rikers Island before entering her guilty pleas to criminal possession of a controlled substance and conspiracy to distribute drugs.
The glum grandmother looked sadly out at relatives while walking slowly into court, her hand clutching the old-fashioned cane, before confessing to her crimes.
Smith will be sentenced to five years in prison in October. Her new digs will be a drastic change from her co-op, where three-bedroom apartments with hardwood floors sell for upward of $350,000. Under a city program to help the poor own their apartments, she bought her place in 2004 for just $250. Smith lived in the building for more than 30 years.
Neighbors described Smith as an imperious presence who openly handled her drug business and flaunted her drug money.
“They had Lamborghinis,” one neighbor said. “Mama had to get one, too.”
But another neighbor recalled the longtime resident playing Santa Claus for local children.
“She’d sit on the steps and give the kids presents — dolls, cars, toys,” the neighbor said. “My heart hurts for her.”