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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

Southern District of Indiana

For Immediate Release

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Joseph H. Hogsett, United States Attorney

Contact: Mary Bippus, Director of Community Relations
(317) 229-2403

Hogsett Announces Joint Initiative to Combat Violent Crime

United States Attorney’s Office to Pursue Violent Criminals Who Prey on Hoosier Communities

INDIANAPOLIS — In an effort to keep Hoosier neighborhoods safer, United States Attorney Joseph H. Hogsett announced today a new initiative to attack violent crime, crack down on illegal guns and prosecute the most violent criminals in Marion County and throughout the southern district of Indiana. For too many young people in this city, it's easier to get a gun than it is an education. That is unacceptable, Hogsett said.

This joint federal–local collaboration will focus on drug trafficking and on criminals who use firearms in their illegal activities. Here in Marion County, I have asked Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry and Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Chief Paul Ciesielski to help identify the ’worst or the worst’ – offenders with criminal histories who cycle in and out of local jails – and decide who among those repeat offenders should be prosecuted under federal law for offenses that make the defendant eligible for stiffer sentences, said Hogsett.

In addition, Hogsett announced that the United States Attorney’s Office (USAO) will:

      (1) prosecute more gun crimes than ever before and increase efforts to identify and vigorously prosecute in federal court violent, repeat offenders and criminal gangs, especially those who use guns to further their illegal activities and criminal enterprises.
      (2) increase the use of law enforcement and prosecutorial tools including court–authorized wiretaps, undercover and covert operations, surveillance, search warrants, and use of the grand jury to develop the best possible cases.
      (3) actively utilize federal drug laws and federal gun laws for the worst of the worst to allow for pre–trial detention and stiffer sentences.
      (4) aggressively employ a multi–agency law enforcement approach to investigate, arrest, and aid in the prosecution of these violent, repeat offenders and gangs. Federal law enforcement partners include the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives (ATF), Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI). Most of these agencies have task forces which include local and state law enforcement officers. Here in Marion County, the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (IMPD), the Marion County Sheriff’s Department, and the Metro Drug Task Force have agreed to continue an unprecedented level of collaboration with federal partners to combat violent crime.
      (5) commit to training all law enforcement officers on the evidence necessary to maximize successful federal prosecutions.
      (6) help find the financial support necessary to aid in sustaining local crime–fighting efforts.
      (7) commit the personnel necessary to prosecute illegal guns, drug and narcotics trafficking and gangs.

    Robert Browning, Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives expressed his agencies commitment, ATF’s primary jurisdiction is over the tools of violent crime–guns. We stand shoulder to shoulder with our law enforcement partners working to reduce the illegal use of guns and dismantling violent gangs.

    Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry supported the effort today saying, We are tired of lip service about guns and gangs. We are committed to be a full–fledged partner, through the initiatives of the MCPO and those of our federal, state, and local partners, in taking down criminal gangs and violent felons."

    I have designated one of my most aggressive Assistant United States Attorneys, Barry D. Glickman, to lead this initiative and to coordinate our efforts to bring the most violent offenders to justice. Barry has successfully handled thousands of cases and has tried over 100 jury trials, said Hogsett.

    While this initiative is expansive in scope and purpose, its success will be measured solely by results. In that regard, Hogsett announced that yesterday a United States District Court grand jury returned indictments in six separate cases. In these cases, 14 defendants were charged with violations of the federal drug and gun laws. 35 illegally possessed firearms, including seven semiautomatic assault rifles and assault pistols, 10 shotguns, and 18 semiautomatic pistols and revolvers were confiscated, as well as methamphetamine, marijuana and cocaine. These cases are indicative of the commitment that this office and our law enforcement partners have in the effort to diminish the use of illegal guns and drugs by those who terrorize our neighborhoods and diminish our quality of life. No meetings. No titles. Just results, Hogsett declared.