Drug Dealers Testify Against Crooked Cops in Detroit

By Seth Ferranti 07/08/16

The gang of crooked Detroit cops are standing trial for stealing drugs from the evidence room, reselling drugs from drug busts, and various other illegal schemes.

via US Attorneys Office

A recent case in Detroit has exposed corrupt cops who worked with drug dealers—protecting them, ripping off their rivals, setting up fake drug busts and getting them to resell confiscated cocaine. Gary Jackson, a well-entrenched drug baron who owned a trucking business, car wash and beauty salon in the city, testified in federal court against Lieutenant David “Hater” Hansberry, a 16-year veteran of the Detroit Police Department (DPD), Officer Bryan “Bullet” Watson, a 22-year veteran of the DPD and Arthur “Curly” Leavells, a former narcotics officer who was in the drug unit under Hansberry. Jackson detailed the exploits of the men he called his “Superfriends“ who could seemingly solve any problem he might have had in the drug business.

Jackson worked with the crooked cops, helping them get rid of cash and drugs seized in drug busts that Jackson would orchestrate. He’d tip the cops off about drug deals and they’d come in like a task force, seizing everything and keeping most of the spoils for themselves before turning a portion in as evidence to justify the arrest. Testimony from the trial showed a world of strippers, fancy automobiles, shopping sprees and even hair restoration treatments for Lieutenant Hansberry and his crew, who were all living well above their police officer salaries—depositing large cash amounts in their bank accounts, shopping at Louis Vuitton and collecting fleets of luxury cars

“I personally know people that have been robbed by the Detroit police for weed, cash, and equipment,” Detroit filmmaker Al Profit tells The Fix. “For example, a guy with a legal grow in Detroit was raided, they took his legal equipment, he went down to the evidence room to get it back, and it had never been turned into the police. Detroit has been in the top five for violent crime rate every year for the last 40 years. The police force is dwindling, the city just came out of bankruptcy, so there’s a lot of dirty cops.”

A bunch of drug dealers have been lining up to testify against Hansberry and his crew to get reduced sentences. Giving testimony similar to Jackson’s, Calvin Turner, Louis Mars and Arthur Knuckles also appeared as witnesses for federal prosecutors, detailing various schemes the officers were involved in including reselling cocaine the cops took in drug busts, setting drug buyers up and then splitting confiscated money with cops, and making fake cocaine for officers to turn in as evidence—cops working with criminals and blurring the line between right and wrong, good and bad

“If you’re really a hustler and you know how to get it in, then being a cop don’t stop your hustle,” Big Gov, a street dude and Detroit rapper tells The Fix. “Some people from the hood, they used to what they used to, cops take money, drugs or whatever. Street guys are just happy not to go to jail so they don’t report things like this, but when it comes out they all jump on the bandwagon trying to get a time cut.”

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After landing on the US Marshals Top-15 Most Wanted list and being sentenced to a 25 year sentence in federal prison for a first-time, nonviolent LSD offense, Seth built a writing and journalism career from his cell block. His raw portrayals of prison life and crack era gangsters graced the pages of Don DivaHoopshype and VICE. From prison he established Gorilla Convict, a true-crime publisher and website that documents the stories that the mainstream media can’t get with books like Prison Stories and Street Legends. His story has been covered by The Washington PostThe Washington Times, and Rolling Stone.

Since his release in 2015 he’s worked hard to launch GR1ND Studios, where true crime and comics clash. GR1ND Studios is bringing variety to the comic shelf by way of the American underground. These groundbreaking graphic novels tell the true story of prohibition-era mobsters, inner-city drug lords, and suburban drug dealers. Seth is currently working out of St. Louis, Missouri, writing for The FixVICEOZY, Daily Beast, and Penthouse and moving into the world of film. Check out his first short, Easter Bunny Assassin at sethferranti.com. You can find Seth on Linkedin or follow him on Twitter.

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