Police bust West Side drug market

Eight people, including two teenagers, were arrested after officers investigated an open-air drug market on the West Side, police announced today. 

The market, on the 1000 block of North Laramie, was directly across the street from a public elementary school.

Beginning April 4, narcotics officers began "Operation Angel's Trumpet" in response to complaints from community members.  According to police, members of the Black P Stones street gang were selling drugs in plain view of children attending the John Hay School.

The drug market operated only during school hours, said police.  Attempts by undercover officers to buy drugs at other times, during the early morning or late afternoon or evening, all failed.

During school hours, narcotics officers were able to make 15 separate purchases and collected 10.2 grams of heroin with a street value of $1,530, police said.

Arrested and charged with criminal drug conspiracy were Bryon Colson, 49, and Derrick Sutton, 42.  Joseph Hunter, 20, Lamont Lamb, 43, Keith Ronbson, 17, and Travis Valentine, 21, have been charged with criminal drug conspiracy and are still at large.  Two teens, 15 and 16, are in custody and were charged with delivering a controlled substance.