Media Contact: Vicki Elaine Becker (574) 296-1888

I am joined here today by Jeff Siegel of the Elkhart County Drug Free Partnership, and my ICE Commander, Investigator John Mohan.

It is no secret that for many years, our community, like so many others, has suffered from the consequences of drug abuse and drug distribution. Our office has partnered with local, state, and federal law enforcement to do whatever we can to combat distribution. We have built up an Intelligence and Covert Enforcement Unit (ICE), which operates in the shadows you don’t often see, gathering information and infiltrating drug distribution networks, which has led to many successful prosecutions. In addition, it provides us with information we sometimes wish we didn’t know – but have an obligation to not only know, but to do something about.

As you have undoubtedly heard, our nation is in the grips of an opioid epidemic. I am not going to pretend that I know how it started, or how it became as bad as it is in other communities. What I do know, is that we are not immune from its impact. Heroin is also present here, in Elkhart County, and is rearing its ugly head in your homes, in your neighbors’ homes, and in your families’ homes.

These people are among the approximately 30 cases we have filed this year relating to Heroin. They are our neighbors, our children, our friends, and our family members. Some of them are addicts, and some of them are exploiting those addicts to line their own pockets with drug money, without concern for what their poison is doing to our community.

I come to you today to speak to both the user and the dealer. First to the user – get help now. There are several treatment programs in the Goshen and Elkhart areas that want to help deliver you from where you currently find yourself, to a life where you can feel strong enough to resist the addiction, put it in its place, and actually LIVE again. You can do this on your own if you act now. If you do not, and we catch you, WE will push you into treatment. There ARE options for you. Additionally, you need to know that many dealers are lacing your drugs with Fentanyl, Carfentanyl, and other analogs to keep you hooked. And these mixtures are deadly. You do not have to find yourself in jail, or dead – this drug is NOT worth dying over. I wish we could have gotten through to the 19 people who have died already this year from drug overdoses, 8 of which were related to Heroin.

Now, to the dealer – We are coming after you. You are done preying on the vulnerable populations of our kids, our family members, our neighbors and our friends. Level 2 felony - Dealing in a Narcotic Drug has a penalty of up to 30 years in prison, and I will not hesitate to seek that kind of a sentence for those who deserve it. Our laws are getting stronger again after our General Assembly learned their lessons from their mistakes two years ago. We have always been aggressive, and we will continue to be aggressive, exercising patience and the absorbing the sacrifices it takes to thoroughly investigate drug dealers, and prove they are guilty. We are coming after you.

Just a month ago, we filed charges against a Heroin dealer in Elkhart County who had been investigated by our ICE Unit. He is now looking at 50 years for all his charges. If you keep dealing Heroin in Elkhart County, you should expect that you are going to get caught. You are welcome to leave now and find another place to spread your poison – but you do need to leave our community.

My call to you, Elkhart County, is to stand up and take a role in protecting the people we care about. If you know someone who struggles with addiction and we can help intervene. Please call us. The ICE Unit tip line is 294-DRUG (3784). Our office number is 296-1888, and you can ask for Investigator John Mohan, my ICE Commander. Do not let these dealers spoil our community. It is not too late, and you will have an impact, but you have to call. We need your help to combat this challenge, it is your community too – let’s make this happen together.

The following is a current list of the treatment providers here in our community that are part of the Drug Free Partnership and regularly utilized by the judicial system of Elkhart County. Please distribute and/or publish their contact information as you are able.

Addictions Recovery Centers, ARC 114 N Main Street-Goshen 204 S. Main Street- Elkhart 533-6154 (Goshen) / 293-1086 (Elkhart) A New Beginning 211 E. Washington Street – Goshen 534-5778/ Fax 534-5778 Center for Behavioral Medicine 1560 Osolo Road – Elkhart 523-3347 Center for Problem Resolution 211 S. 5th Street – Elkhart 117 W. Washington Street – Goshen 294-7747 (Elkhart) / 533-0664 (Goshen) / Fax 293-6186 Oaklawn Psychiatric Center 2600 Oakland Ave – Elkhart 533-1234 Recovery Journey 311 Winsdor Ct - Elkhart 264-5840 / Fax 264-5495


“Under Indiana law, all persons arrested for a criminal offense are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.”