Metal artist's new project: prison bars

Jesse Lee Krimes

A Millersville artist who created the large metal bicycle sculpture outside Central Market is now behind bars after police arrested him on drug charges Friday night.

Jesse Lee Krimes, 26, of 415 Herr Ave., was arrested by members of the county's Drug Task Force, who described him as an upper level drug dealer who had been distributing cocaine to Ephrata and Akron, the west side of Lancaster and Millersville.

Krimes was charged by police with possession with intent to deliver cocaine, firearms violation and possession of drug paraphernalia.

He was arraigned before District Judge Denise Commins and committed to county prison in lieu of $1 million bail.

Police said they served a search warrant at Krimes' home shortly before 8 p.m. Friday, having to force open the door.

Once inside, police said, they could see drug paraphernalia.

But as detectives searched the home they found 145 grams of cocaine, worth about $15,000, a scale and packaging material, along with a loaded handgun and ammunition.

Police said they confiscated $3,800 in cash, jewelry, televisions, computers and tools as proceeds of the drug sales.

A Drug Task Force spokesman said they had been investigating Krimes for a long time, describing him as "a drug kingpin, an upper level drug dealer," distributing cocaine to different areas of the county through other people.

According to newspaper records, Krimes, who is also an artist in metal sculpture, created the enormous black metal bike rack parked at Central Market's northwestern corner in 2007.

He also at one time operated a downtown gallery of his metal works, according to newspaper records.

However, months after the dedication of the bicycle rack, Krimes was arrested for possessing a small amount of cocaine and public drunkenness, newspaper records show.

Staff writer Janet Kelley can be reached at jkelley@LNPnews.com or 481-6026.