Some of Indianapolis' most vulnerable citizens are the indigent men who frequent the city's various shelters. In January, staff members at the Wheeler Mission men's shelter noticed that some of their clients were engaging in erratic and aggressive behavior. Police were called to investigate, and their findings make up the bulk of the case against four men charged with a variety of gun and drug crimes.
The victims appeared to be suffering from an overdose from an unknown drug. Twenty-five men overdosed in a single 24-hour period. Security cameras captured some of the chaos. In one video, a man is shown smoking a cigarette outside the shelter; in a few moments, he attempts to walk but falls, apparently unconscious. In another, one man bit another in the neck. Dozens of victims were taken to hospital emergency rooms.
Police arrested one man on the day after the bizarre behavior occurred. Police then obtained a warrant for the search and arrests of three other men who were allegedly involved. The ringleaders of the group were arrested last week. Police seized nearly 10 pounds of synthetic marijuana, $5,000 in cash and handguns. The four men were charged with a variety of gun and drug charges. The four men were alleged to have given the victims a drug called "spice" that was laced with an unknown chemical. The unknown chemical is thought to have caused the victims' erratic behavior.
Anyone who is facing criminal charges may wish to consult an experienced criminal defense attorney for advice on potential defenses and the likelihood of obtaining a favorable plea agreement or an outright acquittal.
Source: 13WTHR, "4 arrested in connection with Wheeler Mission overdoses," Rich Van Wyk, March 1, 2018