During a press conference in Kansas City, MO., today, Attorney General William P. Barr, U.S. Attorney Justin Herdman and other U.S. Attorneys announced an update on the progress of Operation Legend in several cities across the country, including Cleveland.
Since the launch of Operation Legend, there have been more than 1,000 arrests, including defendants who have been charged in state and local courts. Of those arrests, approximately 217 defendants have been charged with federal crimes. These numbers exclude Indianapolis, whose operation was just announced last Friday. In addition, nearly 400 firearms have been seized by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
“In just a few short weeks, federal investigators working side-by-side with state and local law enforcement have begun to make significant progress towards reducing violence related to illegal firearms, drug trafficking and other crime in our neighborhoods,” said U.S. Attorney Justin Herdman. “In Cleveland, Operation Legend’s law enforcement operations have already resulted in 32 defendants charged federally with various drug trafficking and firearms violations. These early results show the potential that Operation Legend has to make our cities and communities a safer place for everyone to live.”
The Attorney General launched the operation on July 8, 2020, as a sustained, systematic and coordinated law enforcement initiative in which federal law enforcement agencies work in conjunction with state and local law enforcement officials to fight violent crime. The initiative is named in honor of four-year-old LeGend Taliferro, who was shot and killed while he slept early in the morning of June 29 in Kansas City.
Launched first in Kansas City, MO., on July 8, 2020, the operation was expanded to Chicago and Albuquerque on July 22, 2020, to Cleveland, Detroit, and Milwaukee on July 29, 2020, to St. Louis and Memphis on August 6, 2020, and to Indianapolis on August 14, 2020. A breakdown of the federal charges in Cleveland are listed below:
32 defendants have been charged with federal crimes outlined below, with some defendants charged with multiple offenses. Two defendants remain fugitives.
- 22 defendants have been charged with federal drug trafficking charges;
- Nine defendants have been charged with federal firearms violations; and
- One defendant has been charged with carjacking.