Fort Wayne duo faces drug, gun charges after DEA bust on Spring St

Crime

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) — Two Fort Wayne men were arrested on drug distribution charges after police executed search warrants on Spring St. Monday evening.

Steven Hecke, 44, and Samuel Battell, 34, were charged in a criminal complaint Wednesday with the following:

  • Possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and fentanyl
  • Possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime

After searching the entire property, officers found roughly 19 pounds of methamphetamine, 900 grams of fentanyl, multiple guns, cash, as well as marijuana edibles and derivatives, according to the affidavit.

DEA agents said the alleged amount of fentanyl on the street could have been devastating, saying only 2 mg is enough to kill the average person.

Pictured left to right: Sam Battell, 34, and Steven Hecke, 44.

According to case documents, DEA agents in Chicago saw Hecke at a rental storage unit loading a five-gallon bucket into a truck Monday with a license plate registered to his address on Spring St. Soon after, federal search warrants were obtained for that address as well as a nearby apartment suspected of being a drug stash location by DEA.

As Hecke was driving from Chicago to Fort Wayne that day, DEA and the Allen County Drug Task Force began surveillance on his property on Spring St., around the time WANE 15 received reports of a police presence in the area. Hecke and Battell arrived in separate trucks within minutes of each other and briefly met before Battell moved his truck to Andrew St. nearby, according to the affidavit.

Battell and Hecke were seen grabbing three five-gallon buckets from the white truck and taking them into the Spring St. residence before they were confronted by officers. Both tried to flee the scene but were arrested by officers shortly after. The search warrants were executed immediately after.

“We are focused on working with our local, state and federal agencies to curb drug and gun crimes in the Northern District of Indiana,” said U.S. Attorney Thomas Kirsch. “This case is an excellent example of agencies working together to accomplish those goals.”

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