Four people were arrested and a large amount of drugs and cash seized during a drug raid Thursday afternoon on Wallace Avenue, Bucyrus police Chief David Koepke said.
“We had a long investigation — unfortunately, it took a long time and the neighborhood was really frustrated because these guys, as far as drug dealing goes, this house was just terrible,” Koepke said of 115 Wallace Ave. “I don’t know how to say it any other way.”
Arrested were Jonathan Paul Bagley, 30; Cierra N. Vermaaten, 21; Jonathon Arbie Alsept, 24; and Detrell Vashon Lee Bennett, 30, according to a police department news release. All four suspects were taken to the Crawford County Jail to await charges.
As officers continued bringing evidence out of the house shortly after 3 p.m. Thursday, a cluster of smiling neighbors watched from the curb.
“Thank God for the cops; we got this over with,” neighbor Darlene Johnson said. “Just thank goodness; our neighborhood will be clean again for a while.”
Neighbors said there had been at least two overdoses at the house.
“This has been going on for a while; we prayed and prayed for this to happen, and thank God, today it did,” Johnson said.
Bucyrus police Officer Jason Pennington had been investigating activity at the house for several months, Koepke said.
“It was a search warrant … we served it to this house today and found exactly what we were looking for and more,” he said. “It was a drug operation that was operating with drugs that were trafficked from Columbus to here. …”
“The two guys from Columbus were running a deal where they were paying rent to sell drugs here. The person from Bucyrus is definitely looking at permitting drug abuse, a felony charge.”
Investigators won’t be certain what they found until after evidence is tested at the lab, but Koepke said they found suspected meth, heroin and crack. “And somebody was lighting up a marijuana blunt when we went in,” he added. Officers arrived at the scene at 1:19 p.m., according to the news release.
”There were several hundred doses of methamphetamine and several hundred doses of heroin not sold yet,” Koepke said.
According to a news release from the Bucyrus Police Department, the search led to the seizure of about $40,000 in street value of methamphetamine, heroin and crack packaged for sale and in bulk quantities. Officers also found more than $1,300 in cash and other drug-related evidence.
Officers were searching the house carefully because they’d seen signs that the house had been altered to conceal drug activity, he said.
As officers entered the house, two men were sitting on the roof; one jumped off, but was not injured, the police chief said. “We had them surrounded,” he said.
The Crawford County Sheriff’s Office, Crawford County Special Response Team, Galion and Crestline police departments, METRICH and the Bucyrus Fire Department also assisted.
Citizens with crime- or drug-related information can go online to metrich.com to “submit a tip” or call or text tip line, 419-834-2023.
“I guarantee you, we’re going to keep going after folks that are peddling drugs and keeping people sick all over this community,” Koepke said. “We’ve had too many people die. Anyone who says they don’t really want to do anything bad can get help. In the meantime, we’re going to take as many to jail as we can.”
Originally published in the Bucyrus Telegraph-Forum on August 22, 2019.