INDIANAPOLIS – Raids involving federal, state and local law enforcement in Indianapolis were tied to a large-scale drug investigation.
Acting U.S. Attorney John E. Childress said 18 of 19 people sought in connection with the investigation were in custody. Authorities executed 15 search warrants in Indianapolis Wednesday, primarily on the east side of the city.
The raids, part of “Operation Curtain Call,” led to the seizure of significant amounts of methamphetamine and fentanyl, authorities said, in addition to the seizure of cocaine and marijuana.
In addition, investigators recovered 35 guns and about $70,000 in cash.
The suspects face charges related to a drug conspiracy.
According to Acting U.S. Attorney John E. Childress, the wide-ranging investigation involved the FBI, Indianapolis Metropolitan police, DEA, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, the Marion County Sheriff’s Office, Fishers Police Department and Indiana State Police. The FBI Indianapolis office also coordinated with FBI offices in Cincinnati, Louisville and Las Vegas.
The FBI’s Safe Streets Task carried out Wednesday’s raids.
Authorities suggested the group was behind a number of homicides in Indianapolis, although the case doesn’t involve murder charges at this point.
“Several of the subjects arrested yesterday, we believe, are responsible for multiple homicides throughout the city,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge Paul Keenan.
Investigators wouldn’t provide specifics on those homicide cases and no murder charges have been filed.
The investigation started about ten months ago, Childress said, and focused on Jason Betts. Federal authorities obtained court-authorized wire and electronic surveillance of Betts’ cell phones. Information gleaned from Betts led to additional surveillance, Childress said.
According to court documents, Betts obtained large amounts of methamphetamine and fentanyl from sources outside Indianapolis and distributed them through central Indiana using a network of co-conspirators.
Seventeen of the suspects face prison terms between 10 years and life if convicted, Childress said.
Craig McCartt, deputy chief of investigations with IMPD, said the investigation involved close coordination among law enforcement agencies for several months. He acknowledged that the scope of the operation strained resources. In the end, though, he said it was worth it.
“This morning, Indianapolis is safer than it was 48 hours ago,” McCartt said. “And it’s because of the partnerships and the relationships, the collaboration, the cooperation that we have with one another that made that happen.”
McCartt said information from the community also aided in the investigation and thanked members of the community for stepping forward.
Here are the individuals charged in the case:
- Jason Betts, 26, Indianapolis
- Jennifer Black, 39, Indianapolis
- Montez Wells, 30, Indianapolis
- Richard Wells, 28, Indianapolis
- Aleshalia Boss, 40, Indianapolis
- Carl Wilson, 34, Indianapolis
- Donta Hampton, 34, Indianapolis
- Rick Coley, 34, Indianapolis
- Colin Johnson, 30, Indianapolis
- David Duggar, 38, Greenwood
- Brian McGee, 42, Indianapolis
- Justin Helms, 41, Spencer
- William Mosier, 41, Indianapolis
- Christina Pennington, 26, Indianapolis
- Mar-Kel Sampson, 29, Indianapolis
- Asa Vetters, 30, Indianapolis
- Brittany Cocco, 31, Indianapolis
- Marco Uribe, 41, Indianapolis
- Kenneth K. Fielder, 26, Bloomfield