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Police: Star HS Athlete ran cocaine ring

Wayne County, NY--One drug investigator nicknamed him the "Al Capone" of Wayne County. Police say Horace Betts III is responsible for distributing a kilo of cocaine a month in Wayne County towns, and openly flaunting it.

"Every community in this county is impacted by this individual," said Chief John Colella of the Macedon Police department. "That's why we took him out."

Betts was a star on the football field at Lyons high school. Police say his reputation as an athlete, plus his family's connections in the community, created a "no snitching" ring that surrounded his operation, even as it became one of the largest in the rural county.

That entrenched network included his father, Horace Betts Jr, and a mother and son who are also under arrest.

"We have been trying to infiltrate his organization for many years," said Chief Colella. "It took a while but we never give up."

Infiltrating the group took patience and persistence.

"We were able to break into his inner workings," said Chief Deputy Bob Hetske, of the Wayne County Sheriff's Department. "Once we were able to get into the inner group things started clicking for us."

A break in the 2 year investigation came on June 14, at the K-mart parking lot in Victor. Police say Betts met his Rochester supplier there, prepared to purchase a quarter kilo of cocaine.  

"We were able to do physical and electronic surveillance and once that starts your organization starts to fall," said Chief Deputy Hetske.

Police were at the parking lot, waiting.

"We've wanted him for a long time and now we've got him," said Hetske.

Police seized $35-thousand dollars and half a kilo of cocaine during the investigation. Eight people were arrested including Betts, his father, Yadiel Correa, Luz Correa Vasquez, Ashley Santell, Brittany Russell, Torey Smith, and Dajuan Bacot.

More arrests are pending.

"If we have bad guys out there terrorizing our community, then you're going to get targeted," said Tim Kernan of the Drug Enforcement Agency. "And when you get targeted we're going to make sure justice is served."

"We've wanted him for a long time and now we've got him," said Hetske. Betts has been indicted on eight charges in two counties.

"Most of the crime in our community is drug-driven," explains Chief Colella. "So this individual has a huge impact on crime in our community. Hopefully not any longer."

The investigation called "All Betts Are Off" was conducted by a joint team of investigators from Wayne, Ontario, and Seneca Counties along with the New York State Police and federal DEA.

Jane Flasch

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