Tuesday, September 25 2012 6:20 AM EDT2012-09-25 10:20:59 GMT
Local and state officials are serving several arrest and search warrants Monday morning at various locations throughout Dearborn County. Investigators are serving 108 arrests warrants and 19 search warrantsFull Story >
Local, state and federal officials served several arrest and search warrants Monday morning at restaurants, homes and businesses throughout southeast Indiana.Full Story >
Friday, August 1 2014 9:55 AM EDT2014-08-01 13:55:15 GMT
U.S. employers extended this year's hiring surge into July by adding a solid 209,000 jobs. It was the sixth straight month of job growth above 200,000.Full Story >
U.S. employers extended their solid hiring into July by adding 209,000 jobs. It was the sixth straight month of job growth above 200,000, evidence that businesses are gradually shedding the caution that had marked the...Full Story >
Friday, August 1 2014 9:28 AM EDT2014-08-01 13:28:16 GMT
A three-day cease-fire in the Gaza Strip has gone into effect following heavy Israel-Hamas fighting.Full Story >
A Gaza cease-fire quickly unraveled Friday as violence erupted in and around the southern town of Rafah, with at least 35 Palestinians killed by Israeli shelling and the military saying an infantry officer may have been...Full Story >
Friday, August 1 2014 8:44 AM EDT2014-08-01 12:44:35 GMT
The United Nations says 1,737 people, mostly civilians, were killed in Iraq in July, marking a dramatic decline from the previous month, when some 2,400 people were killed as Sunni militants swept across large...Full Story >
Iraq's most influential Shiite cleric appealed to Iraqi politicians on Friday not to make themselves "an obstacle" in the country's transition as the deadline looms for selecting the next prime minister.Full Story >
LAWRENCEBURG, IN (FOX19) -
More than one hundred people charged following a controversial restaurant raid are no longer in trouble with the law.
"This is one of the worst, most troubling abuses of power that has happened in the time that I've been here and I don't want it to happen again," Dearborn County attorney Doug Garner said Wednesday.
"We didn't take advantage of these people," argued prosecutor Aaron Negangard. "In fact, in my opinion, we helped."
The raid took place in September at Acapulco restaurants in Southeast Indiana.
Dearborn Circuit Court documents filed Friday show charges have been dismissed for all but two people. According to the Dearborn County Sheriff's Department, Adolfo Lopez and Benito Lopez are still facing charges. The owners' charges include forgery, perjury and corrupt business influence. Prosecutors say more than $4.4 million in business income went unreported between 2008 and 2012.
Prosecutor Aaron Negangard told FOX19 they decided to drop the charges on the other individuals because they believe the evidence shows many of the people arrested were actually victims; arguing they were being exploited by the owner of the business.
Doug Garner, the defense attorney representing one of the owners, believes that concern for the employees is disingenuous citing how those same employees were first arrested and held in jail in ‘horrific conditions without specific evidence that each individual person committed a crime'.
"The question is not: ‘Why did these charges get dismissed?' The question is: ‘Why did they get filed to begin with?'" argued Garner.
"There was no investigation into ‘Did this individual person fill out this paperwork using a fake social security number?' That's not anywhere in here," he said referencing court documents. "They just rounded everybody up and threw them all in jail and it just shows a total callous disregard of the consequences of being arrested."
On the other side, Negangard argues they had probable cause to justify the arrest warrant for the 109 people.
"We did investigate that those people were working there and that the social security numbers that they used were false," he said.
Ultimately 40 to 50 people went to jail.
"Many of these people did nothing wrong and yet had to spend a day, two days, three days, four days locked up in Dearborn County jail simply because they were workers at a Mexican restaurant," Garner said.
Garner believes the employee's immigration status may have been used to encourage statements.
"It was in furtherance of their investigation is why these people were arrested to begin with," he argued. "Not necessarily that they thought these people had committed any crimes, but they were witnesses that they thought they could get information from and they certainly could."
Negangard, however, maintains the employees arrested were guilty of identity deception and were justly jailed.
"If we wanted to expend the amount of resources on that we could still, but my job as the prosecutor is to exercise some discretion and try to get focus, limited resources, on those who are most culpable," he told FOX19.
Negangard argues the owner of the restaurant was the biggest exploiter of the individuals. He alleged the owner underpaid workers and forced them to give back portions of earnings in certain cases.
"I would say that the process in this case has shown that we're relentlessly pursuing justice," he argued.
While most of the employees were held for a matter of days, FOX19 confirmed at least one man was held in jail until last Friday. Negangard says some people were deported following their arrests, but not on charges related to this case.
Benito Lopez is out on bond. Adolfo Lopez is currently being held at a jail in Dearborn County. His trial date is set for February 4th.
Thursday, July 31 2014 9:48 PM EDT2014-08-01 01:48:50 GMT
Green Township Police are looking for a suspect after a man robbed Kroger while wielding a butcher knife. Police say the man entered the store on North Bend Road with the knife around 10:30 p.m. Wednesday.Full Story >
Green Township Police are looking for a suspect after a man robbed Kroger while wielding a butcher knife.Full Story >
Wednesday, July 30 2014 9:12 PM EDT2014-07-31 01:12:13 GMT
The tattoo has not previously been seen widely by the public because cameras are not allowed inside Indiana courtrooms. The Indiana Office of the Courts released the photo on July 30 as part of evidence logged in by police and presented to the court by the Floyd County Prosecutor's Office.Full Story >
The tattoo has not previously been seen widely by the public because cameras are not allowed inside Indiana courtrooms. The Indiana Office of the Courts released the photo on July 30 as part of evidence logged in by police and presented to the court by the Floyd County Prosecutor's Office.