A portrait of past financial troubles, failed business ventures and addiction problems is beginning to emerge for an Indiana high school golf coach accused of dealing methamphetamine and heroin.
Benjamin L. Beatty, 37, was arrested Tuesday in Columbus, Ind., on drug-dealing, resisting arrest and counterfeiting charges, Indiana State Police said in a news release. He is the golf coach at Greenwood High School.
State Police officers stopped Beatty’s car on Ind. 46 and Carr Hill Road in Columbus and found methamphetamine, heroin and drug paraphernalia, the release said.
Troopers later found more drugs, paraphernalia and counterfeit money in Beatty’s home and a motel room he had rented, State Police said.
Beatty was the golf pro at Otte Golf & Family Fun Center in Greenwood for about four years until owner Terry Sherard fired him about two years ago.
“Over the years I tried to help Ben,” Sherard told IndyStar.com. “I thought he was worth saving at one point.”
Sherard said Beatty told him he was seeking treatment for addiction problems.
“It was obvious to us he wasn’t getting help,” Sherard said. “We’re a family-owned golf course. I can’t have that around the children, and the adults as well.”
In 2011 Beatty filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy with some debts tied to a pro shop and an ice cream parlor he operated at the course, court records say.
He owed $123,000 to a mortgage company and about $67,000 to various credit card companies, banks and other lenders, including Nike, as well as at least $14,000 from a second mortgage on his mother’s home to start a business, bankruptcy court records say.
The bankruptcy filing listed liabilities of nearly $190,000 and assets of about $139,000, according to bankruptcy court records.
Greenwood Schools Superintendent Kent DeKoninck was notified Wednesday that Beatty had been arrested, the school corporation said in a news release. Beatty coaches high school and middle school golf at Greenwood Schools.
Beatty is not employed in any other job within the school corporation and has had no contact with students since his arrest, Greenwood Schools said. The corporation has begun the process of firing him.
According to court documents related to the search warrant, police received a tip that Beatty had been selling drugs and began watching his home on Tuesday.
According to the court documents, officers found about an ounce of methamphetamine and about two grams of heroin in Beatty’s pants pocket.
Police searched Beatty’s home in the 2500 block of Lafayette Avenue and a room he was renting at the Motel 6 in Columbus, where they said they found more methamphetamine, heroin, marijuana, syringes, drug paraphernalia, packaging material and counterfeit U.S. currency and evidence of counterfeiting.
State police arrested Beatty on preliminary felony charges of dealing methamphetamine, dealing heroin, possessing methamphetamine, possessing heroin, possessing a syringe and counterfeiting. Beatty also faces preliminary misdemeanor charges of resisting law enforcement and possessing drug paraphernalia.