Multiple organizations round up 20 suspects in organized crime r - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Multiple organizations round up 20 suspects in organized crime ring

(Source: Smith County Sheriff's Office) (Source: Smith County Sheriff's Office)

Twenty-Five people have been indicted and twenty arrests have been made by the Smith County Sheriff's Office for engaging in an organized criminal activity.

Thirty warrants were executed by various offices from across East Texas for residences, vehicles, cellular, and telephones. Six firearms and drugs were seized, including methamphetamine and cocaine. The investigation also helped recover nineteen stolen vehicles, estimated to be worth $185,000. These vehicles were stolen from Smith County, Henderson County, Cherokee County, Van Zandt County, and Titus County. 

A press release by the Smith County Sheriff's Office states,"Early this morning, law enforcement officers from the Smith County Sheriff’s Office, Tyler Police Department, Henderson County Sheriff’s Office, Van Zandt County Sheriff’s Office, Texas Department of Public Safety, Texas Department of Public Safety Air Wing, East Texas Auto Theft Task Force, Smith County Precinct 5 Constable’s Office and Texas Parks and Wildlife began executing arrest warrants related to the indictments in Smith, Henderson and Van Zandt Counties."

Those indicted for engaging in organized criminal activity include the following:

  • David Blackmon, 31.
  • Joseph Braley, 31
  • Kristopher Britton, 28
  • Holly Renee Brown, 42
  • Gary Hanna, 54
  • Ashley Hoag, 20
  • Johnnie King Jr., 20
  • Adam Leal, 33
  • Jonathan Leal, 35
  • Frank Meadows, 41
  • John Miller, 44
  • Taylor Morrison, 24
  • Michael Neil, 48
  • Michael Oldham, 25
  • Austin Richardson, 26
  • Jessica Rocha, 28
  • Rachel Rush, 34
  • Jacob Spivey, 26
  • Joshua Spivey, 31
  • Dillon Staples, 22
  • Dustin Strong, 27
  • Michael Taylor, 48
  • Dand Woods, 27
  • Adam Zegal, 30

Smith County deputies were dispatched to a suspicious vehicle call on County Road 1145. Deputies determined the vehicle was reported stolen. While deputies were in the area, a neighbor informed that someone ran into the woods after pushing a motorcycle into a driveway. Deputies confirmed that the motorcycle was also stolen.

Detectives were able to obtain a physical description of the suspect from the witness. A Smith County K-9 Deputy was able to locate the suspect and detain him. The suspect was transported back to the Smith County Sheriff's Office. 

"A long-term investigation was initiated regarding a concerted effort between multiple individuals who were committing thefts, burglaries and drug offenses in multiple counties. That investigation involved all of the above listed agencies and culminated into the indictments and arrests being made today," a press release expounded.

The press release declared, "The Smith County Sheriff’s Office cleared four residential burglaries during this investigation, The Tyler Police Department cleared one commercial burglary and multiple vehicle burglaries at the Tyler Airport. The Titus County Sheriff’s Office cleared two residential burglaries, one commercial burglary, and two vehicle burglaries."

One subject, Ricardo Delagarza, fled on an ATV off FM 314 in Henderson County as officers were trying to take him into custody. He left the ATV and fled into the woods. Delagarza was located by a drone and taken into custody.

Another subject includes Horace Dean III, also known as Buster. Detectives learned that Buster was going to deliver a large amount of methamphetamine. Once Dean arrived at his location, Smith County deputies conducted a felony stop. He attempted to flee by reversing his vehicle and ramming a Smith County Sheriff's Detective vehicle. Dean started tearing the bags of meth open and pouring it as the deputies attempted to arrest him. He was charged with possession of methamphetamine, evading from deputies and aggravated assault on a public servant.

Sheriff Smith stated, "There was some outstanding interagency cooperation exhibited during this multi-agency operation."

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