A former Indianapolis Metropolitan Police officer has pleaded guilty to tipping off suspects in a federal cocaine investigation, allowing more than a dozen to escape.
Noble Duke, 39, who joined IPD in February 2001, pleaded guilty Friday to disclosing wiretaps to damage a criminal investigation, federal prosecutor Timothy M. Morrison said today.
He resigned last month and faces up to five years in prison and a fine of $250,000 when he goes before U.S. District Judge Sarah Evans Barker within about 70 days.
“Compromising criminal investigations by alerting persons to their imminent arrest creates situations that endanger both law enforcement officers and the public,” Morrison said in a statement today. “Fortunately, no one got hurt here, but we were only lucky." . . .
The federal agents monitored cell phone conversations between members of several cocaine-dealing groups. Those included “the Shawn Young Organization, the Emory Young Organization, the Paula Rush Organization, the Duane Sturdivant group, the Lawrence Brookins and Kemu Sanders group, the James Carter, Jr. and Jeffrey Carter organization, and Faren Carter,” the statement from Morrison said.Duke was asked by someone to pass along information about the federal probe and did so, prosecutors say.
“The information which Duke illegally disclosed included that Paula Rush and others were under investigation, that their phone conversations were being intercepted, that an indictment was pending, and that police officers would be coming to arrest people on a certain date.”
The Star report doesn't specifically reference the Haughville syndicate bust, but it's obvious from a look at last August's news reports that Duke's tip off had to be related to that federal drug bust. The indictments were handed down last June according to the Star report; however, news of the Haughville busts didn't occur until August 22, 2007. Recall also that one of the victims in Hovey Street murders earlier this year had a child to one of the persons indicted in Haughville syndicate case.