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More than a dozen people arrested after meth and heroin bust in Bartholomew County

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COLUMBUS, Ind. – A months-long investigation in Bartholomew County resulted in the arrests of 16 people accused of dealing heroin and methamphetamine.

Detectives from the Joint Narcotics Enforcement Team made the arrests during a sweep this week with the help of the Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Department, Columbus Police Department, Indiana State Police and DEA Task Force.

According to police, their investigation lasted several months and involved the sale of heroin and meth across Bartholomew County.

The following people were arrested:

  • Nicole L. Childers, 29, Columbus, IN: Two Counts of Dealing Heroin
  • Richard D. Bunch, 53, Columbus, IN: Two Counts of Dealing Methamphetamine
  • Kelsey E. Smith, 20, Columbus, IN: One Count of Dealing Methamphetamine
  • Carrie Jo Meek, 26, Columbus, IN: Two Counts of Dealing Heroin
  • Phillip M. Cochran, 38, North Vernon, IN: Two Counts of Dealing Heroin
  • Charles A. Sims, 40, Columbus, IN: Two Counts of Dealing Heroin
  • Brian S. Suns, 30, Columbus, IN: Two Counts of Dealing Heroin
  • James W. Sidebottom, 32, Edinburgh, IN: Two Counts of Dealing Methamphetamine
  • Christopher M. Bennett, 33, Columbus, IN: Two Counts of Dealing Methamphetamine
  • Elizabeth A. Burton, 29, Edinburgh, IN: Two Counts of Dealing Methampethamine
  • Joanna M. Gearhart, 31, Columbus, IN: One Count of Dealing Methamphetamine
  • Steven C. Garvin, 26, Franklin, IN: One Count of Dealing Methamphetamine
  • David A. Ward, 45, Columbus, IN: Two Counts of Dealing Methamphetamine
  • Haley M. Zapfe, 25, Columbus, IN: Two Counts of Dealing Methamphetamine
  • Ian M. Colson, 34, Columbus, IN: One Count of Dealing Heroin
  • Jesse S. Woolsey, 23, Columbus, IN: One Count of Dealing Methamphetamine

After announcing the arrests, police said they were looking for two people in connection with the investigation, Robert E. Leturgez Jr., 27, Columbus, and Joshua M. “Chirp” Parker, 24, Columbus. The Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Department later said Parker turned himself in Thursday. Leturgez was still at large, police said.

Anyone with information should contact the Columbus Police Department at 812-376-2600.