Athens County Prosecutor Keller Blackburn
Athens County Prosecutor Keller Blackburn

Brandon Jorge Allen, a former Detroit, Mich. police officer, was arrested at Atlanta’s Hartsfield Airport on a felony complaint for Engaging in a Pattern of Corrupt Activity based on his leadership in the drug ring that has been supplying Athens County, Ohio.

The arrest is the result of a major investigation initiated by the Athens County Prosecutor’s Office following drug roundups in Glouster, Ohio over the last several months.

The investigation led to the state of Michigan and ultimately to Atlanta, Ga., where Allen sought to flee as law enforcement was closing in.

Athens County Prosecutor Keller Blackburn and his staff also traveled to South Carolina to collect intelligence in the case. Blackburn was in Detroit last week with staff from his office to help execute a search warrant on Allen’s residence with multiple law enforcement agencies including the U.S. Marshal’s Service.
“We are going to go at this problem at the source,” said Prosecutor Blackburn.

“Anyone who decides to distribute drugs in Athens County, whether or not you’ve ever been here, will face the full power and authority of my office and the State of Ohio. I truly appreciate all the committed officers who made this arrest possible, and especially the efforts of my two investigators, Jay Barrett and Tom McNight, who at great personal risk and sacrifice, made it their mission to shut off the source of drugs poisoning the lives of too many of our residents.”
The arrest – the result of the largest investigation into narcotics trafficking in Athens County history – occurred after Blackburn’s detectives learned Allen was going to leave the country. Blackburn then worked directly with the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Homeland Security and U.S. Customs to flag his passport and have him arrested at the Atlanta Hartsfield airport while trying to flee.

Blackburn worked in cooperation with the Athens County Sheriff’s Office, police departments from Athens City, Ohio University and Nelsonville, and the Meigs County Sheriff’s Office.

In addition, during the multi-month probe, Blackburn enlisted the help of the Ohio State Highway Patrol, prosecutors in Wood County, Ohio and in Wayne County, Michigan, the Michigan State Police Intelligence Unit, the Detroit Police Department, the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office in South Carolina, police officers in West Virginia, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Ohio and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

The investigation involved the issuance of dozens of subpoenas and search warrants, on-the ground intelligence gathering by Blackburn and his detectives in Detroit and Ohio, the examination of hundreds of hours of jail phone calls, monitoring social media activities, examination of public records and business records, phone records, and interviews with offenders and confidential informants.

Prosecutor Blackburn’s Office has presented evidence to an Athens County Grand Jury which returned a 12-count indictment against Allen.