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Weed and Seed nets 11 in Arnold

ARNOLD: Authorities on Friday raided what they said was a drug distribution house in Arnold, taking 20 people into custody and charging 11 of them with drug-related crimes.

The bust happened about 9:30 a.m. at 1345 Fifth Ave., a house owned by Angel Hensley, an Arnold woman with a series of run-ins with authorities, according to Arnold Police Chief Ron Hopkins.

Hopkins said there was no relation between the Fifth Avenue bust and one in Armstrong County that also happened Friday.

The chief said Hensley does not face charges in connection with the raid.

He said the 20 taken into custody gave little to no resistance. About 20 law enforcement officials, including Arnold and New Kensington police officers, Westmoreland County Detectives and Westmoreland County Sheriff’s detectives participated in the raid.

The bust was the result of a Weed and Seed investigation that Hopkins said had been going on for some time.

Weed and Seed is a state initiative that aims to drive crime out of blighted areas and replace it with a stronger community network and economic prosperity. Arnold and New Kensington are jointly participating in the program, which began in the cities more than a year ago.

According to New Kensington Police Chief Chuck Korman, police have conducted 19 raids in the two cities this year through Weed and Seed.

Police said the house they raided was home to a high rate of drug activity. Hopkins said the bust has the potential to knock out a substantial portion of the drug traffic in Arnold.

“We would hope that it would, but it remains to be seen,” Hopkins said.

Hopkins said the fact that the two cities are involved in Weed and Seed made the bust a possibility. He credited the other law-enforcement agencies assisting in the raid’s success.

Korman said that a number of the people charged in connection with the raid were “significant” factors in the drug traffic in the area.

Police allegedly found crack cocaine and marijuana at the Fifth Avenue house. They said that what was more important was arresting some of the individuals who are suspected to be active dealers.

The 11 suspects were being transported to Westmoreland County Prison and were to be arraigned Friday night. Additional Information:

Drug bust arrests

Police charged 11 people with drug-related crimes in connection with a Friday drug bust in Arnold.

Each was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia. Mark Bauer, 42, of 2605 Leona Lane, Coraopolis, faces only that charge.

The other suspects and other charges:

Latoyia Graves, 20, of 1345 Fifth Ave., Arnold also was charged with receiving stolen property.

Two suspects also were charged with possession of crack cocaine: Jack Middleby, 43, of 1345 Fifth Ave.; Teresa Dixon, a.k.a. Speights or Claypool, 44, of Adrian.

These suspects also were charged with possession of a small amount of marijuana: Vanesha Jones, 20, of 1025 Third Ave., New Kensington; Tyrone Ty Howard, a.k.a. Troy Baker, 23, of 1234 Kenneth Ave., New Kensington; and Kareem Middlebrook, 21, Eddie Jones, 21, and Milton Paschal, 23, all of Cleveland.


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