Neighbors play a role in major drug raid - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

Neighbors play a role in major drug raid

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In just two days, Springfield police carried out two major drug raids, leading to 11 arrests and thousands of dollars in drugs taken off the streets.

But they say the key to these investigations is the tips by neighbors.

"We're not taking this anymore, this is our neighborhood, get out," said Kristie Valenze.

Valenze and her neighbors have been fed up with the alleged house on West Alvord Street for years, calling it a sore spot where people would come and go at all hours.

But police call it a "heroin empire" and Thursday they carried out a raid that was months in the making.

Valenze watched it all from her home right across the street.

"We saw the vehicles descend from both ends of our street ... guns were drawn, it was a little nerve-wracking, 'come out with your hands up,' and four people were up on the second floor porch with their hands in the air," she said.

She and her husband say within minutes, law enforcement had people in cuffs and the situation under control.

"It was a very efficient operation and no one got hurt which is always good," said her husband, David Valenze.

Nine people were arrested, Springfield police say they're known offenders.

Police pulled 1,000 bags of heroin, two guns and 100 rounds of ammo from the house.

"That makes one stop and take a very deep breath and be very thankful that it never ventured across the street," Kristie Valenze said.

Police say raids like this are successful because of responsible neighbors.

"If you guys are giving us information about drug houses on your street, trust me, we'll get to them and we'll conduct those raids," said Sgt. John Delaney, of the Springfield Police Department.

Kristie Valenze says her neighbors appreciate it more than they know.

"Several folks stopped and as they were driving by said to the officers 'thank you'"

Police carried out another raid in East Springfield Friday morning and arrested two more people from a home on Redlands Street.

They confiscated nearly 200 bags of heroin and a gun from that home.

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