RUSHVILLE, Ind. (WISH) — Months after an Indiana husband and wife were arrested and accused of operating a massive steroid lab, police have arrested David and Holly Starkey – (Uncle Z) again – accusing the Rushville couple of doing the same thing.
David and Holly Starkey were arrested this week after Rushville Police detectives and deputies from the Rush County Sheriff’s Department executed a search warrant on the Starkey’s Rushville home. According to court records, officers uncovered 200 vials of finished steroids, plastic tubing, cash, scales, postage and other lab materials.
Rushville Police Chief Craig Tucker said it had a street value of roughly $20,000.
“I don’t know that we were surprised so much as we were disappointed,” Tucker told I-Team 8 in an exclusive interview Tuesday. “We really would have rather this whole situation been put to bed the first time and a lesson learned and a debt repaid by everybody. Unfortunately that wasn’t the case.”
Court documents filed Tuesday spell out how police learned the alleged steroid operation might still be ongoing inside the Starkey’s home. It reads as follows:
“On August 12, 2014, David E. Starkey and Holly J. Starkey were arrested for manufacturing illegal steroids in their residence with an illegal steroid lab. At that time, they were alleged to be manufacturing and selling illegally produced steroids throughout the United States. Shortly after their release from jail, the Rushville Police Department began receiving information that the Starkey residence was again being used for the production of illegal steroids.”
On Monday, Tucker said officers executed a controlled buy with David Starkey in Rushville.
“At the culmination of this deal, David Starkey was stopped and arrested in Shelby County, Indiana in possession of over 500 grams of raw steroid powder,” the court documents state.
The documents go on to allege Starkey “was transporting this powder back to the residence to utilize in his lab to produce additional finished vials of steroids.”
After his arrest, a search warrant was executed on the Starkey’s home.
The narrative from the charging documents also details how officers found hypodermic needles, envelopes, a vacuum pump, steroid recipes, finished steroids, used needles and bloody gauze inside the Starkey’s home. Several of the contents were photographed, but Chief Tucker ordered that the bio-hazardous material be destroyed “for officer safety.”
“This (steroid lab) was very similar to the first one, perhaps a slightly smaller scale,” Tucker told I-Team 8.
The Starkeys, who are already facing charges in Rush County following their August arrests, now face five charges including dealing in a controlled substance, conspiracy to commit dealing in a controlled substance, possession of a controlled substance, corrupt business influence and maintaining a common nuisance.
Neighbor Eric Wagner, whose property backs up to the Starkeys’, said he was surprised to hear of their latest arrests.
“I’m a little bit shocked by it. When it happened I was shocked but now that it’s happened again – I figured they had him locked up but I haven’t seen much activity (at the home),” Wagner said. “I’m just glad that they kept an eye on them and (they’re) caught again so it’s off the streets.”
Tucker said that both David and Holly Starkey declined to speak to investigators. But following their August arrests, David Starkey told police that he didn’t like drugs, but needed money and that a friend in North Carolina hooked him up with a Polish man named “Z” who reportedly supplied him with the “stuff” which was then in turn manufactured and distributed all across the United States, investigators and court records alleged at the time.
“Starkey advised that Uncle Z would pay him $10 per package of viles (sic) that he distributed and $5 per package of pills that he would distribute for Uncle Z in the U.S. Starkey advised that he assumed that this was illegal but stated that he had no money and no job and he had to do what he had to do. Starkey advises that he does not like drugs and does not like kids doing drugs. Starkey advises that he does not know who is getting this stuff and how safe it is,” court documents filed in August read.
Tucker re-iterated the danger of purchasing anabolic steroids.
“People are receiving something that looks very sterile and one assumes at face value would be put through rigorous tests, when in actuality it’s made in someone’s home.”
Holly Starkey was being held in the Rush County Jail. She declined I-Team 8’s request for an interview. David Starkey was being held in the Shelby County jail. Messages left for jail commanders regarding David Starkey were not returned. Court clerks were unsure when either Starkey would be in court.