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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Indiana

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, March 13, 2015

Three Indianapolis men face federal charges in North Vernon robbery and murder case

Trio to face federal penalties for their role in Muscatatuck gun store owner’s death

INDIANAPOLIS - United States Attorney Josh J. Minkler, announced today three Indianapolis men have been charged federally for their role in the robbery and murder of Scott D. Maxie, a federally licensed gun store owner in North Vernon, IN.

• Darryl Anthony Worthen, 25, Indianapolis

• Dejuan Andre Worthen, 23, Indianapolis

• Darion Dashon Harris, 20, Indianapolis

All were charged with discharging a firearm in relation to a crime of violence resulting in death, robbery, conspiracy to commit robbery and theft of firearms.

"This type of violence is something no family or community should have to face," said Minkler. "When a violent crime like this occurs, the federal hammer will be used by the United States Attorney’s Office."

The indictment alleges that on September 20, 2014, Darryl Worthen, Dejuan Worthen and Harris (the defendants) traveled from Indianapolis to North Vernon to see what inventory was inside the Muscatatuck Outdoors Gun Shop and made plans to rob the owner. They drove back to Indianapolis only to return the following day to commit the robbery.

After returning to the gun store, on September 21, 2014, one of the defendants disconnected a security camera inside the gun shop. During the robbery, Darryl Worthen allegedly shot and killed the gun shop owner with a .22 caliber handgun then all the defendants stole a large quantity of firearms from the gun shop and returned to Indianapolis. Once home with the guns, the defendants sold and distributed many of the firearms and kept several for themselves.

This case was the result of an investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Indiana State Police, Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department, Jennings County Sheriff’s Department and the Jennings County Prosecutors Office.

“Violent crime will not be tolerated in this community,” said Jennings County Prosecuting Attorney Brian Belding.  “The individuals responsible should be punished to the fullest extent of the law.  The decision to have these individuals charged federally was made after thoughtful consultation with the family members.  My goal is that the individuals responsible for this heinous act serve the maximum sentence under the law.   This is more likely to be accomplished under the federal sentencing guidelines.   As much as it would be appropriate to prosecute these crimes locally, it would not be in the best interest of our community when they could receive a harsher sentence in Federal Court if convicted.  My heart goes out to Mr. Maxie’s family, friends, and loved ones.”

“My condolences go out to Mr. Maxie’s family and friends,” said Donald Soranno, Special Agent in Charge of ATF’s Columbus Field Division.  “While nothing can fill the void of his loss, ATF and our law enforcement partners will work to ensure that these individuals, and others like them, are held accountable for their actions.    This violent act was a senseless tragedy for the entire community."

“When armed robbers graduate to murder to complete their crime, they are deserving of the most aggressive prosecution possible,” said Indiana State Police Superintendent Doug Carter. “A civil society demands such prosecution and it is the very least we can do to honor Scott Maxie and his surviving family after such a senseless act.”

According to Assistant U.S. Attorneys Barry D. Glickman and William L. McCoskey, who are prosecuting this case for the government, all defendants could face the death penalty, life imprisonment, or any term of years if convicted.

An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial at which the government must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

Updated March 13, 2015