GREENFIELD — A methamphetamine dealer is headed back to prison for five years after he was caught illegally carrying a handgun, police said.
Gurinder Khera, 21, 981 Sheets Court, Greenfield, was convicted of drug-dealing last year and ordered to serve the majority of his sentence on probation. Prosecutors filed a new case against him earlier this year after photos surfaced of the man showing him holding a firearm, which officials said violated the terms of that sentence.
He’ll now be sent to an Indiana Department of Correction facility for five years, then spend an additional seven years on probation.
Deputy Prosecutor John Keiffner, who handled both cases against Khera for the state, said he hopes a second stint in prison shows Khera how seriously the county takes his actions and encourages Khera to keep out of trouble once he’s released.
Last April, Khera pleaded guilty to dealing methamphetamine as a Level 4 felony and carrying a handgun without a license as a Class A misdemeanor, bringing to end a months-long investigation that involved several area law enforcement agencies.
At that time of Khera’s original sentencing, Hancock County Superior Court 1 Judge Terry Snow heard testimony from Khera’s family members, who asked for leniency, telling the judge they rely on Khera to work at their family business and that their loved one had stopped used drugs.
Snow agreed to allow Khera to serve one year of his 10-year sentence behind bars, with the rest of the time on probation.
Snow warned Khera if he violated the terms of his probation, he’d be sent to prison.
Khera spent eight months in an Indiana Department of Correction prison and had started a nine-year stint on probation when police received a tip last month from a concerned citizen who suspected the man was selling drugs again, according to court documents.
Officers began monitoring Khera’s home in the Copeland Farms subdivision in Greenfield as part of their investigation, court documents state.
On one afternoon in mid-February, they searched the home alongside two U.S. marshals, who were working with Delaware County officials to track down evidence for a separate investigation, court documents state.
Inside the home, detectives found marijuana, the magazine from a gun and drug paraphernalia, according to court documents. Investigators also searched Khera’s cellphone, finding incriminatory images and videos, including one video that shows a man, believed to be Khera, counting a large amount of money with a handgun sitting nearby, documents state.
Khera this week pleaded guilty to a Level 4 felony count of unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious felon as part of a plea agreement with prosecutors.
During Khera’s time in prison, he is ordered to receive drug-addiction counseling, Snow said.