Dozens arrested on drug trafficking charges in Mansfield

Mansfield Drug Bust (Photo: WCMH)

MANSFIELD, OH (WCMH) — Mansfield police believe Wednesday’s arrests of more than two dozen people will have a significant impact on the flow of heroin and other drugs into Richland County.

More than 250 local, state and federal law enforcement personnel participated in a roundup of people charged in a pair of federal indictments alleging drug distribution conspiracies.

In one case, 18 people were charged with conspiracy to distribute heroin. Twenty-one others were charged in the second case alleging conspiracy to distribute heroin, cocaine, crack cocaine and marijuana.

15 federal search warrants were executed at homes around the city of Mansfield where authorities say drugs were stored or distributed.

David Yates says he got a rude awakening when the federal agents came after his next door neighbor. “I heard a thump – like a grenade launcher and then this flash bang…like this dynamite explosion.”

His neighbor, Mazzarney Hardy, was one of 39 people charged in the alleged drug distribution conspiracy.

Investigators say the participants in the alleged drug rings had a singular motive. “All business,” said Keith Porch, the Assistant Police Chief for the City of Mansfield. “People that care nothing about society or whether people live or die and are clearly out for profit.”

David Yates says he would not have suspected his neighbor of being involved but said, “If he’s in anyway connected with the drug problem or the heroin that’s the cause of all this, then so be it. Those people need to be locked up, all, of them, they need to learn their lesson and get this stuff off the streets.”

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