Rusk County drug investigation yields numerous arrests
Aug. 1, 2012 at 11 p.m.
A task force of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies arrested 10 people in Rusk County early Wednesday following a year-and-a-half long federal investigation into drug trafficking in the area. At least 12 total people have been arrested as part of the drug probe.
The mega-task force swept across Rusk County before dawn, rounding up suspects with nicknames such as Big Shep, Kiki, Blade, Null Null and Coonjack - all of whom face federal charges of conspiracy to distribute more than 280 grams of crack cocaine in and around Henderson.
The 10 - ranging in ages from 19 to 52 - are among 14 people named in a sealed federal indictment, according to a statement by U.S. Attorney's Office of the Eastern District of Texas.
The arresting force was made up of more than 100 agents from local, state and federal agencies, said Tom Crowley, the special agent public information officer for the ATF.
The arrest warrants said the suspects conspired "to distribute more than 280 grams of crack cocaine around Henderson since September 2010."
Following the arrests, the 10 suspects were taken to Tyler, where they appeared before U. S. Magistrate John D. Love.
Two other suspects will face hearing in the same court next week, according to the statement.
The defendants face a minimum of 10 years and up to life in federal prison and fines of up to $10 million if found guilty of drug conspiracy.
The charge of weapons violations could earn the defendants, at least five years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.
Defendants who faced their first hearing Wednesday are:
Deric Lamont Sheppard, aka "Big Shep," 32, of Henderson
Master Markeith Lacy, aka "Kiki," 36, of Henderson
Justin Lamark Porter, 23, of Overton
Ernest Vantrezes Mallard, aka "Duck," 30, of Henderson
Derek Lamarcus Horton, aka "Null Null," 27, of Kilgore
Marcus Derail Porter, aka "Blade," 30, of Henderson
Kail Demond Lacy, Jr, aka "KJ," 19, of Henderson
Randy Cameron, 52, of Henderson
Lattoris Dewuan Jackson, aka "Coonjack," 32, of Henderson
Cornelius Marquis Murphy, aka "Papa Murphy," 21, of Henderson
Travis Lanard Porter, aka "Nard," aka "Travis Deamon," 35, of Henderson, and Johnny Ray Smith, Jr., 33, of Henderson will have a hearing next week.