MERRILLVILLE | Lake County police arrested five people on suspicion of prostitution, drug dealing and drug possession Friday just blocks from Merrillville High School.
Patti Van Til, spokeswoman for the Lake County Sheriff's Department, said the Lake County Drug Task Force executed a search warrant at 402 E. 69th Place in Merrillville, less than a quarter of a mile from the high school.
Police said prostitution was being solicited at the location via the Internet on the Finest Dynasty Inc. website. Crack cocaine also was being distributed and used there as well, they said.
"The investigation and subsequent search warrant was a result of a tip to our anonymous tip line," Lake County Sheriff John Buncich said in a statement issued Monday.
Jeremy Moats, 24, of Merrillville, was arrested on suspicion of dealing crack cocaine, false informing, visiting a common nuisance and possession of crack cocaine.
Brittany Derkits, 20, of Merrillville, was arrested on suspicion of visiting a common nuisance. Rachel Kamp, 25, of Tinley Park, was arrested on suspicion of dealing crack cocaine and visiting a common nuisance. Formal charges have been filed with the Lake County prosecutor's office.
A third female suspect and a second male suspect will be identified at a later time, Van Til said.
Buncich said he encourages the public to continue to contact county police with tips.
"The information is valuable and fruitful to our investigators."
The Lake County anonymous tip line can be reached at (800) 750-2746.