Police in Bartholomew County arrest 3 people linked to sale of ‘tainted’ heroin that led to overdoses

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Corey Brecken Hofelich (left), Christopher Paul Rees (center) and Andrew Christopher Ash (right)

UPDATE (Dec. 26, 2017)– Corey Hofelich was sentenced to about six years (2,212 days) in the Indiana Department of Correction. He also received 547 days of probation, with the first 30 days on work release.

Original story:

BARTHOLOMEW COUNTY, Ind. – Investigators in Bartholomew County made several arrests and said more were possible after a batch of “bad heroin” led to several overdoses.

The Joint Narcotics Enforcement Team served a search warrant in the 300 block of Hope Avenue in Columbus Tuesday night with help from the DEA and Columbus Police COPS Unit. Investigators believed the home was one of the main sources of the tainted heroin.

After a search, the task force arrested three people and located 5 grams of the “bad heroin” as well as an additional 9 grams during its investigation. Police also recovered $1,000 in cash and drug paraphernalia.

Christopher Paul Rees, 22, Columbus, was arrested on preliminary charges of dealing heroin, possession of heroin, possession of marijuana and maintaining a common nuisance.

Andrew Christopher Ash, 21, Columbus, was arrested on preliminary charges of possession of heroin, possession of paraphernalia and maintaining a common nuisance.

Authorities also took Corey Brecken Hofelich, 22, Columbus, into custody on preliminary charges of possession of heroin, possession of a legend injection device, possession of paraphernalia and visiting a common nuisance.

Investigators said charges could be enhanced since the location where they served the search warrant was in close proximity to the Foundation for Youth, which offers community programs and services for youth.

The investigation is ongoing and more arrests were expected, investigators said.

The Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Office has also partnered with the DEA, assigning the deputy sheriff to a DEA task force so he can work directly with the DEA in Indianapolis to focus on drugs in Bartholomew County.

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