Crime Watch 8

6 Indy residents indicted for straw purchases of guns used in Chicago crimes

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Federal investigators have filed six separate cases against Indianapolis residents accused of making straw purchases of guns later used in crimes in Chicago.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Indiana announced the grand jury indictments on Thursday afternoon. Investigators say the six individuals purchased more than 90 guns since November 2020 and more than 20 of those were linked to crimes in Chicago. The cases are part of the Project Safe Neighborhoods initiative.

In one case, federal investigators say Indianapolis resident Tashia Overton, 21, faces charges of:

  • Making a false statement during purchase of a firearm
  • Making a false statement with respect to information required to be kept by licensed firearms dealers
  • Unlicensed dealing firearms

Investigators Overton purchased 31 guns in 25 days in Lebanon, Carmel, Greenwood, Indianapolis, Lebanon, Avon and Brownsburg. Investigators say she sold all of those guns within three days of buying them and six have been recovered in the Chicago area. One of them was connected to a mass shooting in Chicago, according to investigators.

Investigators say 23-year-old Eric Keys, Jr. of Indianapolis purchased a gun that was later used to shoot a man and a child in Chicago in April 2021. The child, 6, did not survive. Investigators say Keys bought that gun in Indianapolis in March 2021. Keys faces charges of:

  • Making a false statement during purchase of a firearm
  • Making a false statement with respect to information required to be kept by licensed firearms dealers

Four others face charges in straw purchase cases:

  • Jordan Henry, 22
  • Jayte Davis, 22
  • Kwamay Armstrong, 29
  • Charles Hunter, 22

Eight other Indianapolis residents were indicted in straw purchase cases earlier this year.

“Those who illegally provide firearms to others fuel the violent crime crisis facing many of our major cities” said Acting United States Attorney John Childress said in a statement. “Despite the fact that those who illegally provide those firearms may never pull a trigger or brandish a firearm during a crime, they are significantly responsible for the destruction and harm resulting from the use of those firearms and as a result, will be vigorously investigated and prosecuted in the Southern District of Indiana.”

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