Dozens Arrested in “Operation Rap it Up”

MEDFORD, Ore.– A multi-agency investigation uncovered at least 40 people with federal drug and firearms violations, as well as activities related to prostitution and gang activities. The Jackson County Sheriff’s Office said 26 people were arrested and seven search warrants were served.

Sheriff officials said the investigation also uncovered an organized “straw” purchasing ring, where one person buys a firearm for another in order to conceal their identity. They said the investigation began after a five year old girl, Alysa Bobbitt, was killed when John Meyer allegedly fired a fully-automatic rifle from the floor below. Another woman, Karen Hancock, was also injured in that incident last year.

During that investigation, police said John Meyer was found to be involved in “straw” purchasing activities. Police said some of the “straw” purchases from Jackson and Josephine Counties wound up being used in crimes scenes in California.

Investigators said handguns, rifles, Methamphetamine, Heroin, Marijuana, Oxycodone, and Ecstasy were also seized during the investigation. Those arrested are facing various charges including; Racketeering, Attempted Murder, Assault, Delivery of Various Controlled Substances, Promoting Prostitution, Firearms Offenses and Conspiracy to commit these crimes.

The Jackson County Sheriff’s Office said the investigation is ongoing and they expect more arrests.

Newswatch 12 is at a press conference related to the investigation right now. Stay tuned at 5 and 6p.m. to hear what the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office had to say, and how the investigation is expected to be carried out in the future.

Operation Rap It Up  - Update (2)