Terre Haute Methamphetamine Investigation
Leads to Nineteen Federal Indictments
APR 15 -- (Terre Haute) A federal grand jury returned an indictment of 19 alleged methamphetamine traffickers, which was unsealed today in U.S. District Court in Terre Haute, Indiana. Law enforcement officers from the region participated in the execution of arrest and search warrants related to the investigation on persons and residences in the Terre Haute area. The indictment was the result of an investigation directed by the Evansville office of the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Vigo County Drug Task Force, Vigo County Prosecutor’s Office, the Indiana State Police, and the Vincennes Police Department. Other law enforcement agencies that participated in the investigation included the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, & Firearms, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Clay County Sheriff’s Department, and other federal, state and local law enforcement agencies.
A federal grand jury returned one indictment in the case, which charged a total of 19 individuals:
All 19 defendants are charged with conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine. In addition, Shelton is charged with a separate count of distribution of methamphetamine. The indictment charges that Wesley Hammond, an inmate at the New Castle (Indiana) Correctional Institution, maintained a cellular telephone while in prison and used the cellular telephone to coordinate the activities of a methamphetamine trafficking organization operating in Terre Haute. Hammond’s girlfriend, Jennifer Poltrock, purportedly served as Hammond’s lieutenant in Terre Haute and distributed methamphetamine and marijuana to drug dealers who worked for Hammond. Hammond’s primary methamphetamine dealers allegedly included Dustin McCombs, David J. Pitts, Bradley S. Shelton, Antrio D. Hammond (Wesley Hammond’s brother), and Jwuan Moreland.
The investigation led to the following drug and currency seizures in the Terre Haute area:
“The Evansville, Indiana office of the Drug Enforcement Administration continues to be fortunate to have a fortified collaborative front against area drug trafficking,” stated Stephen A. Luzinski, the Acting Special Agent in Charge of the DEA's Chicago Field Division, which covers the state of Indiana. “This is another example of local, county, state, and federal law enforcement agencies combining investigative resources to combat alleged drug traffickers.”
According to Assistant U. S. Attorney Bradley A. Blackington, who is prosecuting the case for the government, most of the defendants, if convicted, face maximum possible prison sentences of life imprisonment.
Initial hearings will begin at 9:00 a.m. on Monday, April 19, 2010, for some of the defendants before a U.S. Magistrate Judge in Terre Haute.
The indictment is an allegation only, and all defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty at trial or by guilty plea.