22 arrested in Evansville drug, gang crackdown

EVANSVILLE, Ind. - A crackdown on drug and gang-related activity in Evansville led to 22 arrests Thursday, federal prosecutors and local authorities said.

Federal prosecutors said the arrests centered on a street gang with the name "300 Wag Block," referring to the 300 block of Waggoner Avenue on the Ohio River city's southeast side. A federal indictment alleges the gang has been responsible for violent acts and the distribution of cocaine and other drugs.

"The allegations in this case describe a dangerous gang that for years peddled violence and drugs across the city of Evansville," U.S. Attorney Joe Hogsett said in a news release.

Eight of the suspects, including one who remains at large, face federal charges. Some could face life in prison, prosecutors said.

The Evansville Courier & Press reports three suspected gang members were arrested early Saturday in connection with a shooting at Hammerheads Sports Bar & Night Club in downtown Evansville. A federal indictment alleges the gang was also involved in other assaults.

Mayor Lloyd Winnecke issued a statement saying the arrests "will have a major impact on reducing the amount of recent gun violence and drug trafficking that has put our community on edge in recent months."

The case resulted from a joint local and federal investigation.

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