DETROIT (WWJ) - Hundreds of police officers hit the streets in a series of raids overnight on Detroit's west side. The operation dubbed "April Showers" is aimed at nabbing drug dealers and parole violators.
"April showers bring May flowers" -- those were the words of Detroit Police Chief James Craig as 300 officers left roll-call and descended on four west side neighborhoods. Craig says they're looking for drug dealers and those with outstanding warrants or who have violated parole.
"Here on the west side, we've been a little neglectful and so now it's time to address an area that last year had 45 narcotics complaints; and this year, already, 11 narcotics complaints. And those are complaints that community members have called in," said Craig.
He says "Operation April Showers" has been weeks in the planning.
"Anytime we have to go into areas, especially when you're talking about narcotics locations, it's always a risk. These officers, as they do everyday, they put their lives on the line. And as I said in my comments to them during roll-call, be safe and you truly are some of the best of the best in this country," said Craig.
WWJ Newsradio 950's Sandra McNeill, who witnessed a few of the raids, described it as like something out of a movie as dozens of police officers descended on two separate drug houses on Appoline Street. In the first, Chief Craig says there were four arrests.
In the second, "We have three adults out front that are detained," said Craig.
As for something thrown out of the window as police began that raid.
"It looked like a little package of some sort. The officers got a pretty good look at who tossed it," said Craig.
A neighbor, who didn't want to be named, shook the hand of the police chief.
"You may not come when we want you, but you come on time," the man joked.
And when asked what it has been like living near those homes, the man replied, "Pure hell."
As for those who were arrested, the man says, "Get a job." ... "To all of them, get a damn job."
In the third raid, at Kentucky and Cambridge, police found a mass of drugs -- 89 rocks of crack, 9 packets of heroin and three guns. Rodney Dent likes what the police chief is doing.
"I grew up over here. We moved over here in '67. And my mom's still over here, so I worry about her. So, I'm glad," says Dent.
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