Busts, cases building with STOP

2013-08-29T19:30:00Z 2013-08-29T23:47:27Z Busts, cases building with STOPChristine Kraly christine.kraly@nwi.com, (219) 933-4195 nwitimes.com

GARY | Gary resident Mallory Webb was arrested Wednesday on a warrant for invasion of privacy.

It might not have happened if the 43-year-old hadn't been changing a tire Monday.

That night, members of the new Region STOP Team patrolling through the Steel City approached Webb to ensure he was changing a tire and not stealing it or its car, East Chicago Police Chief Mark Becker said.

After a busy night that included traffic stops yielding 35 bags of marijuana and 10 bags of crack cocaine, STOP officers took a closer look at Webb the following day. They realized Webb, who had been convicted of involuntary manslaughter in 2010, was violating his parole and had a warrant for violating a protection order.

Becker and the other members of the multidepartment STOP team say it's proof the patrols in the county's busiest crime spots are filling gaps in law enforcement.

The increased traffic stops and neighborhood walks — such as the one the group did Wednesday along Guthrie Street in East Chicago — are leading to leads and tips that help in open cases.

Another bust Monday led STOP officers to a tip they hope could result in collaring a murder suspect. Officers arrested a person who gave them a tip that the wanted suspect was living in a nearby complex. 

The group began adding patrols to Gary and East Chicago last week. Hammond officers joined the initiative Wednesday and likely will patrol that city starting next week, Hammond Police Chief Brian Miller said.

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