The Main Stream

Dec 3, 2009 2:19 AM

4 home invasions in 2 days in Tucson, all tied to drug smuggling

In the last two days there have been four home invasions in the Tucson area. The latest invasion was this morning near Grant and Silverbell roads.

Yesterday suspects forced their way into another home, near Elm and 6th Avenue. Also there was a home invasion near River Road and La Cholla and another at the Mission Sierra Apartments.

Investigators say, they're seeing more home invasions and they're confiscating more drugs but why now? Well it turns out, just like retailers, drug smugglers are stocking up for the holiday season.

Plain and simple officials say, it's the holidays and they say the drug smugglers want to get their loads across, and those doing the home invasions know there's money and drugs being stored inside homes.

Tucson Assistant Police Chief Brett Klein says, "A lot of the home invasions we see are specifically related to the amount of drugs we see coming into our community."

Drug enforcement administration officials say, drugs are the reason for the home invasions and they are coming in by the truck loads and getting seized by federal agents. Officials say that this is harvest season and drug smugglers are under the gun to get their goods across the border.

The pot is coming across in various forms each bundle weighing an average of 10 pounds. DEA officials say one pound of pot has a street value of $500, that same pound sells for between $1,200 and $1,300 in New York.

Assistant Chief Klein says, "We have people who are bringing drugs into the community, they are stealing drugs when they're going to stash houses, they're going to load houses, they're going to distribution centers, they're going to rip off drugs."

On Tuesday federal agents collected over 4,000 pounds of pot over the holiday weekend. Instead of bringing it to their giant secure undisclosed drug warehouse, they chose to have it destroyed, in order to make room for the influx of pot that will be coming in within the next few weeks.

One DEA official says this holiday influx is common. It slows down towards the end of December and starts back up in mid January.

Assistant police Chief Klein wants to reassure everyone that, in general, the home invasions are not random and usually target those who are usually involved in criminal activity.

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