New arrest in drug investigation linked to officer-involved shooting, searches

KBTX News 3 at Ten(Recurring)
Published: Sep. 18, 2023 at 10:46 PM CDT
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COLLEGE STATION, Texas (KBTX) -A new arrest has been made in connection with a drug investigation that shook several College Station neighborhoods earlier this year. This operation, which involved the execution of search warrants at multiple locations, ended with a deadly officer-involved shooting at one of the homes searched.

According to court documents, 26-year-old Michael Gentry of Cypress was recently arrested by the Department of Public Safety (DPS) near Houston and now faces charges related to drugs and engaging in organized criminal activity in connection with the ongoing investigation.

The February operation involved the execution of four search warrants at residences on Greens Prairie Rd, Tranquil Path Drive, Spring Loop, and a storage facility within College Station city limits. Authorities reported the seizure of firearms, ammunition, drug paraphernalia, and various illicit substances including marijuana, LSD, THC, and others.

The initial investigation targeted Abraham Escobar, identified as the accused drug dealer at the center of the probe. Court documents revealed College Station police had been tracking Escobar’s alleged involvement in drug distribution since August 2019, initially focusing on his dealing of marijuana by the ounce. In 2021, a second narcotics investigation revealed his involvement in the distribution of fraudulent Percocet and Adderall. Escobar was described in police records as a “high-level drug dealer” and was the primary suspect in all four search warrants executed on February 8, which ended with a fatal officer-involved shooting at a duplex on Spring Loop Drive.

Police said during the execution of the warrant on Spring Loop, a man inside identified as Mark Hopkins, 22, fired at officers who returned fire and killed him.

The College Station police officer who shot and killed Hopkins was later cleared of any wrongdoing by a Brazos County Grand Jury.

Hopkins was not the target of the search warrants but was a resident at the home.

New Arrest in College Station Drug Investigation.
New Arrest in College Station Drug Investigation.(KBTX)

The search warrants implicated at least four alleged co-conspirators, including Scott and Leslie Siddons, both of whom were arrested on February 8.

Additionally, two other women, one believed to be in a romantic relationship with Escobar, were also implicated.

Court documents further reveal that Scott Michael Siddons, 49, and Leslie Siddons, 45, were investigated for drug-related activities at their residence on Greens Prairie Road near Arrington Road. Following a recent search warrant, law enforcement found prepackaged marijuana and professionally packaged THC cartridges in the residence.

The Siddons are now facing charges of Engaging in Organized Criminal Activity in addition to their previous drug-related charges.

Court documents allege that the Siddons received payments ranging from $300 to $500 from Abraham Escobar to store drugs at their residence. Escobar was the primary target of the early-morning search warrants executed on February 8th at multiple locations throughout the city.

The College Station Municipal Court released four search warrants executed by College Station...
The College Station Municipal Court released four search warrants executed by College Station Police on February 8 in a drug-related investigation.(KBTX)

With this latest arrest, Gentry joins co-conspirators Scott Siddons, Leslie Siddons, and Escobar as they await trial on charges related to drugs and organized criminal activity, all of which are now indicted in connection with this case.

Online records indicate that this isn’t Gentry’s first encounter with the law in Brazos County. He had previously been arrested by Texas A&M University Police for carrying an unlicensed weapon and possession of a controlled substance and marijuana.

KBTX reached out to College Station Police for updates on the ongoing case and any potential future arrests, but they could not immediately confirm further details.

Both Gentry and Escobar have been released on bond, while jail records indicate that Scott and Leslie Siddons remain in the Brazos County Jail.

KBTX News 3 at Six Weekday EXTENDED(Recurring)