A man from Niles has been arrested in South Bend after police conducted an undercover drug deal with the suspect, who then led police on a chase that ended with a crash.
Police sent a criminal informant armed with a hidden camera to a home on Chippewa Street to buy drugs from Olen Lorenzel Simmons, Jr., 25.
According to court documents, images from inside the home showed hundreds of suspected fentanyl pills, a scale used to weigh the pills, a 4-year-old child walking around the table where the deal was going down and the child’s mother.
Minutes after the deal went down, Simmons left the home. Police tried to pull him over, but he wouldn’t stop and sped off, eventually crashing into another car at the intersection of Kern Road and Carroll Street, injuring himself and sending the other driver to the hospital.
Police recovered a gun, marijuana, and cash from the drug deal at the crash site. They found more illegally possessed drugs, paraphernalia and weapons at his home. Simmons was arrested on a slew of charges.
The child’s mother was also arrested for neglect.
Simmons was charged with the following counts:
Count I: Dealing in a Narcotic Drug, a level 2 felony
Count II: Neglect of a Dependent, a level 6 felony
Count III: Resisting Law Enforcement, a level 6 felony
Count IV: Criminal Recklessness, a level 6 felony
Count V: Unlawful Carrying of a Handgun, a class A misdemeanor
Count VI: Resisting Law Enforcement, a class A misdemeanor
Count VII: Possession of Marijuana, a class B misdemeanor
Count VIII: Unlawful Carrying of a Handgun, a level 5 felony
The sentencing range for a level 2 felony is 10 to 30 years. The sentencing range for a level 6 felony is ½ to 2 ½ years. The sentencing range for a Class A misdemeanor is up to one year. The sentencing range for a Class B misdemeanor is up to six months, and the sentencing range for a level 5 felony is 1 to 6 years.
As a result of the same investigation, the Prosecutor’s Office has also charged Jakila Ball, 23 of South Bend, with one count of Neglect of a Dependent, a level 6 felony.
Both are currently being held in the St. Joseph County Jail and are expected to be arraigned on Friday, May 26.