DOJ seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Southern District of Indiana

For Immediate Release

Thursday, June 5, 2014
Joseph H. Hogsett
, United States Attorney
Contact: Tim Horty

Hogsett Announces Prosecution Of Three In Methampethamine Tracfficking

EVANSVILLE – Joseph H. Hogsett, the United States Attorney, announced the indictments of three men involved in methamphetamine trafficking. Travis Adams, 32, of Mount Vernon, David Connor, 46, of Boonville, and Joseph Isbell, 31, of Dallas, Texas were indicted on one count each of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine. Adams was also indicted on one count of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

In 2010, a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Task Force agent turned up evidence that Adams, Connor and Isbell were involved in interstate drug trafficking, from Texas to Indiana. Investigations into these men’s activities this year allege that Isbell was a distributor to Adams and Connor. In April 2014, Task Force agents received search warrants and allegedly found over two pounds of meth in their search. Adams and Connor were arrested.

"Going after those who transport drugs into our state and those in our state who wish to make money off of selling illegal substances is an important part of keeping Hoosiers safe," said Hogsett.

The criminal complaint alleges after arresting Adams and Connor, Connor stated that he and Adams had returned from Missouri on the previous evening after buying methamphetamine from Isbell. Connor advised that Isbell would be making trips to Evansville in the coming days with another two pounds of crystal methamphetamine. Connor agreed to place law enforcement monitored phone calls to Isbell in order to track his movements and plan for his arrest. Once on alert that Isbell would be in town, law enforcement officers were at his planned location in order to take him into custody. Isbell was arrested at Tropicana Casino a few days after Adams and Connor. Isbell later was released on bond from state charges.

At the time of the arrest, Adams was in possession of a firearm. By law, prior felons are banned from owning or possessing firearms. Adams’ felony record is as follows:

  • Possession of Precursors, Vanderburgh County, 2001
  • Dealing in Methamphetamine, Vanderburgh County, 2002
  • Maintaining a Common Nuisance, Vanderburgh County, 2002
  • Arson, U.S. District Court, Southern Indiana, 2010
  • Conspiracy to Commit Arson, U.S. District Court, Southern Indiana, 2010

This prosecution is part of the Violent Crime Initiative (VCI). The United States Attorney’s Violent Crime Initiative began in 2011, and is intended to focus on the "worst of the worst" violent offenders by marshaling federal resources to provide local partners the additional tools they may need to succeed in their effort to promote peace.

A major part of VCI is keeping firearms out of felons’ hands. In 2011, only 14 firearms charges were filed. Since then, over 325 firearms cases have been prosecuted. By charging these cases federally, violent felons must serve 85% of their sentence at a minimum.

"I am proud of the work my office has done to ensure that drugs stay off the streets and guns are possessed only by those who can legally own them," said Hogsett.

This case was a join investigation with the DEA and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

According to Lauren Wheatley who is prosecuting this case for the government, each defendant could serve a prison sentence of 10 years to life and up to a fine of $10 million if convicted.

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Columbus Field Division