WINNEBAGO COUNTY, Ill. (WIFR) - Law enforcement agencies say they are doing everything in their power to remove drugs and violence from our community.
"When illegal contraband is in our community it poses a severe danger," said Marilyn Hite Ross, Winnebago County State’s Attorney.
12 people are charged on drug and firearm charges in Winnebago County and four other face federal charges. Members of the Rockford Police and Winnebago County Sheriff’s Narcotics Division, the DEA Rockford Task Force, FBI and Slant worked together to identify this group of suspects and will continue to go after people causing problems in the community.
"These drug dealers, drug peddlers are the ones we are going after. They are holding guns, they are shooting each other dealing drugs and we will go after them with everything we got," said Chief Dan O’Shea, Rockford Police Department.
Among those charged in the county seven are in custody which includes John E. Curtis, Daniel D. McCune, Eunice E. Jarrett, Gregory L. Watson, Demargio F. Tripp, Fernando L. Freeman and Joe F. Anderson. 5 other suspects are still wanted including Marlon A. Powell, Sherman Jones, Antwon A. Sherman, Thomas C. Cravens and Tyrone L.T. Anderson.
"We don't know just by a miracle who drug dealers are, so call us, continue to call so we can continue to have a great response from the community," O’Shea said.
Within these arrests, law enforcement recovered hundreds of grams of cocaine, heroin and cannabis 17 cars and 6 firearms which included stolen guns and a high caliber rifle.
"We have laws in place for individuals who do not have a right to have those firearms and those laws exist for a reason. So anytime you have illegal firearms in the community it poses a danger," Ross said.
"These individuals that are selling the heroin, the fentanyl and all the other illegal drugs and they are taking members away from the community," O’Shea said.
In a separate case, the State's Attorney's Office announced homicide and drug charges against Suzette Vazquez. Investigators believe the 33-year-old woman sold drugs to another woman who according to an autopsy report died from an overdose of fentanyl and cocaine.
One suspect has pled guilty and six others are scheduled to appear in court. Two suspects will appear in front of Judge Ronald White tomorrow.