INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (April 21, 2016) – In a coordinated effort, IMPD and the FBI arrested nine members of the Gett Money Gang (GMG) on Tuesday during Operation Go Broke. Police say these gang members have been involved in several homicides and a string of violence around the city.
The Gett Money Gang operated on the north side of Indianapolis in two main locations: Creekwood Apartments near West 71st Street and North Michigan Road, and 6470 Scenic Court. The gang members and their associates were believed to be trafficking drugs as their main source of income. Members of the group are suspected in several aggravated assaults, robberies and murders. The investigation included the FBI, U.S. Marshals and IMPD.
Police seized 17 guns, 5.96 grams of cocaine and more than 26 pounds of marijuana during the operation, along with more than $32,600 in cash. Shootings in the Butler-Tarkington community were retaliation for a fight that broke out at the Indiana State Fair, investigators said Thursday. Charges against the suspects include conspiracy to commit dealing in marijuana, corrupt business influence and criminal gang activity.
Investigators said they arrested 26 people during the six-month investigation. Nine were arrested as part of Tuesday’s warrant sweep, and police were still looking for six members of the group.
Arrested in warrant sweep:
- Rashaan Bangmon, 20
- Charles Davis Jr., 20
- David Gibbs, 22
- Deion Orr, 22
- Ryan Pedtke, 29
- Casey Pugh, 39
- Micah Smith, 23
- Landon Tompkins, 20
- Daitwon Williams, 20
- Jaylen Grice, 22 (Turned himself in Friday afternoon)
Still wanted on warrants:
- Robert Carey, 19
- Tarell Davis, 22
- Hayes Hall, 24
- Deshalon Jackson, 20
- Robert Starks, 25
According to court documents, several of the individuals associated with the gang were involved in incidents of shots fired that date as far back as 2012. In one incident, five people were shot at the canal in downtown Indianapolis. Daitwon Williams was initially identified as the shooter, but victims later recanted their statements and the charges were dropped. Investigators linked the group to a number of thefts and acts of violence.
The latest round of violence was sparked by a fight between rival gangs, including the “Gett Money Gang,” at the Indiana State Fair in 2015. Retaliatory shootings followed, including one that killed Clarence Havvard, a friend of a member of the rival gang. In another shooting, 10-year-old DeShaun Swanson died after someone opened fire during a memorial service.
According to court documents, GMG members have known each other for several years; many of them went to school together. They’re also active on social media, which provided police with key evidence of their activities thanks to posts on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube. In music videos posted on YouTube, individuals wore “black shirts depicting an image of a hooded figure holding money in clenched hands with the words Gett Money Gang emblazoned across the front of the shirt.” The videos glorify drugs, guns and violence, as do many posts on other social media sites.
During a news conference Thursday, Mayor Joe Hogsett called the arrests "great work" from federal and local investigators in collaboration with the Marion County Prosecutor's Office. Hogsett said the operation was just the beginning.
"We still have a long road ahead, but I am pleased to announce this week that members of the 'Gett Money Gang' have been arrested in Indianapolis by a joint law enforcement task force," Hogsett said. "The task force's commitment and dedication to keeping Indianapolis a safe and secure community for all is proof that we will continue to stand up against the enormous array of the world's ills."
Hogsett said the work isn't finished yet, and that law enforcement would continue to prosecute violent offenders.
"Indianapolis is a great city, and it's going to stay that way," he said, touting a collaborative approach to law enforcement. "We cannot do this alone. We need the help of our community."
Hogsett again outlined his plans for a "beat" oriented approach to policing. Those would begin in some of the city's most underserved communities. His hope is that members of the community will know officers' names and rebuild trust between the department and Indianapolis residents.
"For too long, many in our community have harbored a distrust of our police officers. Through this new system, beat-oriented, community-based, we will rebuild the trust between our great police force and our great community. We want our citizens to know that they can count on and trust all law enforcement officials, federal, state and local."
Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry said the long-term investigation was primarily conducted by the Safe Streets Task Force, which includes the FBI and IMPD. He described the investigation as "tedious" and said several methods were used to gather evidence, including monitoring jail calls, wiretaps and "traditional" police techniques. Fifteen individuals were charged; nine of them are in custody. Curry said three of the suspects--Deion Orr, Landon Thompkins and David Gibbs--were already in jail on unrelated charges.
"The shootings in particular that were occurring in Butler-Tarkington had arisen as part of a 'tit-for-tat' retaliation that started with a fight at the Indiana State Fair," Curry said. "One individual who was formerly associated with this same group is Michael Pugh, who has been convicted of multiple offenses in the violent home invasions which occurred on Spring Mill and 71st and College."
IMPD Chief Troy Riggs said the arrests were part of a collaborative effort and said more work was ahead.
"I've never seen this type of collaboration in the history of my 26 years of law enforcement, and it continues to grow every day," Riggs said. "And we need it to grow to deal with some of the issues that the mayor and I have very openly and publicly talked about on numerous occasions."