Proceedings against alleged Ghost Face Gangsters members continue
One of several people included in an indictment against alleged members of the Ghost Face Gangsters appeared for a brief bond hearing in U.S. District Court in Rome on Friday.
Jennifer Barteski is one of 23 people named in the massive amended indictment unsealed in August. A previous indictment had been released in February after a news conference at Cobb County police headquarters.
For her part, Barteski is accused of the possession with the intent to distribute at least 500 grams of methamphetamine and had a firearm in her possession while committing the crime of drug trafficking, the indictment stated.
Charges against those indicted state the group formed a criminal drug trafficking enterprise, which was often coordinated from inside Georgia prisons, and resulted in several murders — including killing police and correctional officers.
According to the indictment:
Primarily the crimes illustrated in the indictment are gang activity stemming from the formation of the gang in 2000 at the Cobb County Jail and later devolved into drug trafficking and violently punishing those who hadn’t upheld the rules of the gang or who had offered testimony against members.
In one instance a gang leader, Jeffrey Alan Bourassa, gave instructions from prison to punish a gang member only identified as JBB. On December 2016 they held JBB at gunpoint and, using a knife, cut off his gang tattoo.
While some of the reported leaders — such as Bourassa, David Gene Powell, Marc Avon Lefevre and Richard Brian Sosebee — were in prison, others within the gang were given leeway to enforce gang rules or smuggle drugs and cellphones into prisons around the state, according to the indictment.
On Feb. 4, 2014, James Phillips shot a Cobb County police officer five times and told another person prior to the shooting “this is what it means to be Ghost Face.” Phillips is deceased.
The same gang has also been linked to high-profile cases, including the June 2017 shooting deaths of correctional officers Sgt. Christopher Monica and Sgt. Curtis Billue by inmates in Putnam County. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty against Ricky Dubose and Donnie Rowe for the killings. The indictment stated Dubose — identified as RD — is a known member of the gang.
On Sept. 29, 2017, police say Seth Brandon Spangler — a Ghost Face member — shot and killed Polk County police Det. Kristen Hearne. Spangler has been charged with murder and the Polk County district attorney is seeking the death penalty.