Tuesday, April 8, 2003

Police make 117 arrests in Westwood

Drugs, guns seized in sweeps

By Jane Prendergast
The Cincinnati Enquirer

Cincinnati police shut down what they call a crack "cook house" in Westwood over the weekend during their latest concentrated attack based partly on neighborhood complaints.

The department has staged Community Response Team sweeps about once a month since the beginning of 2003, when they swarmed the West End after two homicides there in three days.

In the Thursday and Friday sweeps, officers made 117 arrests, confiscated eight guns and seized crack, powder cocaine and marijuana worth more than $25,000.

In the 2900 block of Urwiler Avenue in Westwood, officers said they found evidence that people were cooking powder cocaine there to make crack. They found a Pyrex measuring cup they were cooking it in, they said, and three boxes of baking soda, which is used as a bonding agent.

They also found five guns in the house and almost $5,000.

Three men were charged with drugs and weapons offenses: Mark Suttles, 21; Kevin Suttles, 20; and Lavoris Hightower, 21.

Supervisors choose which neighborhoods and crime hot spots to target by looking at statistics of violent crime, calls for service and residents' complaints.

"It's a focused approach of specific resources to specific complaints," said Capt. Paul Humphries, commander of the vice unit.

In North Avondale, officers searched a Warwick Avenue house and found 134 morphine tablets, crack and more than $18,000. A man there, Charles Boyd, 55, was charged with drug abuse and trafficking.Of the 117 arrests, 70 were for drugs.

E-mail jprendergast@enquirer.com

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