Police: Seniors' apartments used for drug sales in Detroit

Police: Seniors' apartments used for drug sales in Detroit

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Orchestra Tower apartment complex in Detroit Orchestra Tower apartment complex in Detroit
DETROIT (WJBK) -

Investigators raided two apartment complexes in Detroit trying to get drugs off the streets and give seniors peace of mind.

"The senior population is a vulnerable population. People take advantage of that. They know where the weaknesses are, and they're going to prey on those individuals," said Wayne County Undersheriff Daniel Pfannes.

Investigators from several different agencies descended on the Orchestra Tower Apartments on Woodward and another housing complex as part of a massive drug sweep called "Save Our Seniors." A tip into the Detroit Housing Commission in 2012 led to Monday's effort.

"These people took advantage of force and coercion to work their way into these individuals' homes," Pfannes said. "Basically told them we're going to sell drugs out of your apartment, and there's nothing that you can do for it."

Undercover officers were eventually sent into the apartment complexes to make buys. The investigation will amount to some 40 arrests.

The reaction from residents was overwhelming.

"We were applauded as we came in. People still giving us tips, thank you, look here, look there, don't go away," said Chief Anthony Holt from Wayne State University Public Safety. "You get the community to support you like this, this makes the job very worthwhile."

The suspects range in age from 20 to 60 years old. They will face a number of charges on both the state and federal levels.

"We continue to work in a collaborative law enforcement environment here in Detroit making sure that the most vulnerable segment of our society is safe," said ATF Special Agent in Charge Daryl McCrary.

Investigators said marijuana, cocaine and heroin were being sold out of those apartments.

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