By GARY POPP
A series of heroin purchases made through a confidential informant by the Jeffersonville Police Department Drug Investigation Unit netted three arrests last week.
JPD set up five heroin purchases through the informants between June 3 and June 19.
The operation ended the afternoon of Wednesday, July 10, when police executed three arrest warrants at a home in Alyson Circle Apartments on East 10th Street in Jeffersonville, just north of Youngstown Shopping Center.
Arrested were Tavon Hyman, 23; Arienne Whitlow, 42; and Cherish Schmitt, 19. All three suspects have been charged in Clark County Circuit Court No. 2.
According to police, the Alyson Circle apartment where the warrants were served belongs to Whitlow, and Hyman and Schmitt also live there.
JPD conducted its first controlled buy on June 3, which included a confidential informant making a phone call to Hyman to arrange a heroin purchase “in the area of 10th Street and Clairview [Drive], ” according to the affidavit, and near the suspects’ home.
The informant was met by Whitlow who, in exchange for money, provided the informant “a torn, clear, plastic baggie containing a brown-powder substance,” according to the affidavit. The substance received during the exchange weighed .3 gram.
The following day JPD again teamed up with an informant and a phone call was made to arrange a heroin purchase, but this time it was answered by Hyman’s girlfriend, Schmitt. The exchange also took place “in the area of 10th Street and Clairview [Drive].” The informant was met by Hyman and Whitlow, and during the transaction .1 gram of heroin was received, according to the affidavit.
A week later, on June 11, JPD arranged for an informant to set up another heroin purchase from Hyman. After the informant spoke with Hyman on the phone, for a third time, a transaction was made at the same location as the previous two encounters. The informant met with Hyman, Whitlow and Schmitt and bought .15 gram of heroin.
On June 17, an informant reached Hyman by phone and set up a heroin deal in his Alyson Circle Apartments home. The informant purchased .25 gram of heroin, according to the affidavit.
Two days later, a final call was made to Hyman by a JPD informant to set up a heroin deal. The meeting location was near the intersection of 10th Street and Allison Lane. During the exchange .25 gram of heroin was bought.
In each of the five incidents, the purchased substance was field-tested with a positive presence of heroin.
Hyman has been charged with two counts conspiracy to deal in narcotic drug, all class A felonies; three counts dealing in narcotic drug, all class A felonies; two counts possession of narcotic drug, all class B felonies; possession of a narcotic drug, a class B felony; and maintaining a common nuisance, a class D felony.
Whitlow was charged with conspiracy to deal in narcotic drug, a class A felony, three counts dealing in narcotic drug, all class A felonies; and three counts possession of narcotic drug, all class B felonies.
Schmitt was charged with two counts dealing in narcotic drug, both class A felonies, and possession of a narcotic drug, a class B felony.
Each of the 19 felony charges, excluding the single maintaining a common nuisance charge, was elevated because the alleged crimes took place within 1,000 feet of a family housing complex or school.
Those institutions are Jeffersonville High School, Lafayette Square Apartments and Alyson Circle Apartments.
During the search warrant police issued additional charges, which remain in preliminary status.
Hyman was preliminarily charged with dealing in controlled substance, a class A felony, possession of a firearm by a serious felon and dealing in a narcotic drug, both class B felonies, and maintaining a common nuisance, a class D felony.
Whitlow was preliminarily charged with dealing in a narcotic drug, a class B felony, maintaining a common nuisance, a class D felony, and possession of a controlled substance, a class C felony.
According to court documents, Whitlow and Schmitt each have a pretrial conference scheduled Aug. 19.
A pretrial conference has been slated for Hyman on Aug. 26.