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Operation: Heat nabs 17

Operation: Heat nabs 17
Operation: Heat nabs 17
The mug shots of those apprehended in Operation: Heat on Tuesday morning.

Nearly 20 deputies with the Harrison County Sheriff’s Dept. fanned out across Harrison, Crawford, Clark and Orange counties early yesterday (Tuesday) morning to serve arrest warrants on 24 people accused of various felony drug-related offenses.
Teaming up with the Harrison County Prosecutor’s Office, the Indiana State Police Drug Enforcement Section and the FBI Task Force in what was dubbed ‘Operation: Heat,’ 17 warrants were successfully served and arrests made as of press time yesterday afternoon, Harrison County Sheriff Rodney (Rod) Seelye said, on people accused of selling drugs such as heroin, methamphetamine and prescription pills.
This was the fourth such undercover drug operation during Seelye’s tenure and the first since ‘Operation: Reaper,’ which took place immediately after Halloween last year.
Prior to officers leaving the Harrison County Justice Center just after 5 a.m., Seelye explained that there wasn’t any real meaning behind the name of the sting and, in fact, the idea came from an inmate.
‘About three months ago in jail, they said, ‘Hey, just so you know, we know all about Operation: Heat.’ I asked what it was, and they said it was a round-up and we had 70 indictments coming. I was like, ‘Really? Interesting. We didn’t have Operation: Heat’,’ Seelye told his officers. ‘Just so you know, every year they know doom and gloom is coming and you are getting in their heads. They are paying attention. Several times over the past year, we’ve received text messages or phone messages where the people say they aren’t coming to Harrison County. So, you’re making a difference.’
Arrested were Sandra Wilson, 55, of Mauckport; Amanda Arce, 30, Georgetown; Robert Morgan, 65, Central; Christopher Morgan, 35, Central; Rachel Baxer, 35, Ramsey; Nathan Vogle, 38, Corydon; Darron Stone Jr., 28, Louisville; Todd Taylor, 46, Georgetown; Tonya Zyrd, 43, Mauckport; Kim Alves, 42, Marengo; Danny Smith, 62, Corydon; Kenneth Engleman, 32, New Salisbury; Kelsey Griffith, 20, Corydon; Doris Coffman, 60, Central; James Haggard, 26, Paoli; Roger Grant, 43, Grantsburg; and Charles Montgomery, 39, English.
‘(They) elected to sell poison, often referred to as illegal narcotics, within our community and other surrounding communities and neighborhoods. Here at the sheriff’s department, we call it poison because we see the destruction that these illegal narcotics wreak on the homes, individuals and families within our communities,’ Chief Deputy Daran Hodges said. ‘At the end of the day, we want to make sure that we present a solid case. Of course, everyone is, at this point, considered innocent until proven guilty … ‘
Hodges said the remainder of individuals with outstanding warrants will be tracked down.
‘As we speak, the remainder of my team is out there continuing to hunt and chase the remaining individuals who sold these narcotics in our community, and we’re going to continue to pursue them,’ he said. ‘So, if, in fact, you are not in our jail right now, go to the North Pole. We’re going to find you.’
Hodges thanked the community for being ‘watchdogs’ and urged people who have tips about possible drug-related activity to call the HCSD 24-hour tip line at 812-738-8477.