Police raid large steroid lab in Rushville home, couple arrested

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A husband and wife were arrested Tuesday after Rushville Police say they broke up an illegal steroid ring the couple were operating out of their home.

David E. Starkey, 39, and his wife, Holly Starkey, 34, were arrested for dealing in a controlled substance, a level 2 felony.

Police are calling it the largest anabolic steroid lab ever found in the state of Indiana.

"The DEA agents that were involved have informed us this was the largest active steroid lab that they have seized. That doesn't mean there are not larger labs out there, but this was the largest they had seized," said Rushville Police Chief Craig Tucker.

Agents with the Drug Enforcement Agency, postal inspectors, Rush County Sheriff's Department and Rushville Police all descended on the home at 1247 E. State Road 44.

The seized items included raw materials for making the drug inside silver packets, empty bottles for the finished product, and vials already filled with gold liquid suspected to be the steroid.

The evidence filled three tables at Rushville police headquarters.

"At this time, we're not entirely sure how the whole operation worked, but would be safe to say at this time our understanding is part of the distribution has been through the U.S. Postal Service," Tucker said.

The police chief would not divulge how officers learned of the lab.

The first agency on the case was the U.S. Postal Inspection Agency. A postal inspector involved in the operation also said he could not discuss how the Postal Service learned of the alleged operation or how long it has been going on.

"As always, when there is use of the mail or potential use of the mail to facilitate a crime," U.S. postal inspectors get involved, said postal inspector Ken Miller.

It is also unclear whether the products were distributed nationwide or just in this region. The investigation has yielded a shipping box labeled for Pakistan, equipment allegedly used in manufacturing steroids at home and labels claiming the product is made under license to European pharmacies.

More charges are likely to follow, according to police.