HED:Drug operation nabs 20 street-level dealers

CATEGORY: Crime

AUTHOR: GIBSON

HED:Drug operation nabs 20 street-level dealers

Area and state narcotics agents arrested more than 20 people in Lee and Monroe counties Thursday as part of a statewide operation targeting street level drug dealers.

Operation Hot Spot was coordinated by the Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics and focused on 36 cities around the state, said MBN Director Don Strange.

“We talked with local police chiefs and sheriffs É to find out where the trouble spots were,” said MBN Maj. James Brown.

The focus on street level dealers is an effort toward improving the quality of life in neighborhoods by reducing street drug sales and the violence associated with drug trafficking, Brown said.

In Lee County, 11 suspects were arrested on felony drug charges where agents focused on Ida Street and North Green Street areas in Tupelo and the Palmetto community, Brown said. Five other suspects also were charged with misdemeanor marijuana and crack cocaine charges in the course of the roundup by the Lee County Sheriff’s Department. Those arrested in Lee County are listed on Page 5B.

In Monroe County, seven suspects were charged with selling controlled substances where agents focused on South Aberdeen, Brown said.

Participating in the operation in Lee and Monroe counties were Mississippi Highway Patrol troopers and criminal investigators, Lee County sheriff’s deputies, Tupelo Police special operations group, North Mississippi Narcotics and Aberdeen Police as well as MBN agents.

-Michaela Gibson Morris