By Jim Hagerty
ROCKFORD — Seven Rockford residents face a multitude of state and federal charges after a months-long drug bust involving city, county and federal authorities, law enforcement officials announced Friday, Nov. 3
“We’ve been working this case since February,” Assistant U.S. Attorney John McKenzie said.
During the past eight months, investigators have conducted numerous searches. Police executed 10 warrants Thursday, and recovered approximately $100,000 worth of heroin, four handguns, six vehicles, and more than $250,000 in cash.
Tervarie T. Lottie, 29; Tyshon Watson, 22; and Johnia Wilson, 39, all of Rockford, were indicted in federal court for conspiracy to distribute heroin during various periods of the investigation. Lottie and Watson were also charged with distributing heroin.
“City, county, state and federal departments have committed to taking drugs and violent criminals off the streets of Rockford,” Rockford Police Chief Dan O’Shea said. “We will not stop until we [arrest] the people who are causing the problems in our community.”
A fourth suspect, 26-year-old Jasmine N. Bradley, who is in the Winnebago County Jail on unrelated charges, was also indicted by the grand jury on three counts of distributing heroin.
Each defendant has pleaded not guilty.
William Evans, 67; and 44-year-old Latrese Lottie were arrested on state charges as part of the investigation. Williams faces various drug and weapons offenses. Lottie was charged with possession of cocaine and manufacturing or delivery of cocaine.
Conspiracy to distribute heroin and distribution of heroin are felonies under the Illinois Controlled Substances Act. Each count is punishable by up to 20 years in the Illinois Department of corrections.
The Winnebago County Sheriff’s Department, State’s Attorney’s Office and the FBI also assisted in the investigation.
Meanwhile, in DeKalb, 12 people, including one juvenile, were arrested in a string of shots-fired incidents police say were drug- and gang-related.
“From the onset of this gun violence, we have worked in collaboration with other law enforcement agencies to gather information and implement proactive strategies to increase the police presence in affected neighborhoods, collect evidence, and arrest the offenders involved,” DeKalb Police Chief Gene Lowery said in a release.
The DeKalb Police Department was assisted by the Illinois State Police, DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office, Northern Illinois University Police Department, Sycamore Police Department, Cortland Police Department, Sandwich Police Department, Aurora Police Department, Malta Police Department, Waterman Police Department, and DeKalb County State’s Attorney’s Office. R.