MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Memphis Police Department and Organized Crime Unit officials announced they arrested 13 accused gang members and a U.S. postal carrier on drug trafficking charges during a six-month sting.
Police said the six-month investigation targeted the sell of heroin, fentanyl, cocaine, marijuana, and oxycodone pills in Memphis.
"I think it bears stressing that we may never know how many individuals in our community died as a result of this poison, nor will we ever know how many lives will be saved today by removing this poison from the streets," District Attorney Amy Weirich said. "Drugs now kill more people every year than guns and cars."
Letravious Shaw, a United States Postal Service carrier was one of the people arrested. He's accused of helping gang members traffic drugs through his position as a mail carrier.
"Investigators discovered that four individuals involved in this conspiracy were also involved in the theft of thousands of oxycodone pills from a Southeast Memphis pharmaceutical warehouse in which they were all employed," MPD Director Michael Rallings said.
Despite the 14 arrests, investigators said there are 11 more on the run that they identified as drug traffickers from this investigation.
"I couldn't sit here and tell you, but when we talk about removing individuals who have put about 72,000 pills out, the amount of drugs that you see, that means that we're probably investigating a number of fewer deaths from heroin overdoses. We know that he drug court often says that 70 percent of our crime is related to drugs and drug addiction, so this is a step in the right direction," Rallings said. "We know that the impact of drugs in our community is substantial, but today I don't think anyone could sit here and tell you what the long-term and short-term impact will be."
OCU investigators seized heroin, marijuana, cocaine, two handguns, four vehicles, and $17,000 in cash.
They said the people arrested belong to various gangs, specifically Grape Street Crips, Traveling Vicelords, and Gangster Disciples.
The following people were arrested:
- Davius Carter, 29
- Gregory Williams, 35
- Alphonso Henderson A.K.A. Hubba-Bubba, 52
- David Johnson, 31
- Adrienne Thompson, 26
- Demion Young, 32
- Jimmie Philips, 26
- Larry Broadnax, 28
- Letravious Shaw, 33
- Marqual Gentry, 24
- Marquette Hammon, 39
- Micah Baker, 38
- Larry Nelson, 66
- Tamika Paige, 36
The following 11 people are still on the run:
- Antonio Thomas, 31
- Dante Mahone, 25
- Eddie Hooper, 27
- Ernest Austin, 51
- Kraig Boddie, 29
- Leon Mohn, 30
- Marquise Rice, 32
- O.B. Hildson, 29
- Raymond Rayner, 26
- Taviyon Thompson, 23
- Wesley Wilson, 19