Keeping Drugs out of the Community
There are four steps in ridding your community of narcotics:
- Take an active role in the safety of your community
- Be aware
- Be concerned
- Report narcotic activity
How to spot narcotic activity in your neighborhood
Be suspicious of:
- People meeting in public places (parks, parking lots, public establishments, in the road) and exchanging packages.
- People who accumulate expensive "toys" (cars, boats, off-road vehicles, RV's) who do not work, or who do not have any apparent source of income.
- Frequent visitors who come to a house and stay for only a few minutes. They may come on foot or in vehicles.
- Visitors coming or going at odd hours.
- Residents who leave their house all hours of the day and night, or to persons parking their vehicle down the street and walking up to a house.
- People leaving their house to use public or car phones.
- Secretive modifications or construction to a house or property. This could indicate the building of a drug laboratory, a marijuana greenhouse, or hiding place for drugs.
- Chemical odors that could indicate the presence of a drug laboratory.
- Hoses and electrical cords running out to garages or other outside buildings. This could indicate the presence of a drug laboratory or a marijuana greenhouse.
- Persons going to extreme measures to protect their privacy and security, especially if it doesn't fit the neighborhood. For example, bars on doors and windows, video surveillance cameras, attack dogs, windows blacked out or covered with foil, security gates, the posting of guards, threats to neighbors or innocent trespassers.
The above activity is not illegal. People have the right to privacy and to conduct legitimate business, as they desire. However this activity is consistent with narcotic trafficking and should be reported to the police.
- Call the Narcotics Division of the Middletown Township Police Department at 215-750-3845 ext. 308. A confidential meeting will be arranged, or your information can be taken over the telephone.
- You can also give the information on the Anonymous Tip portion of this web site.
- Do not wait, the longer you delay in reporting the activity, the greater the danger is for you and your neighborhood.
- If you witness a crime in progress, or an emergency situation, dial 911.
- Do not take any action yourself, and do not invade the privacy of others.
- Keep track of the frequency and the time of the suspicious activity.
- Photograph or video the activity if you can do so safely and discreetly.
- Note the physical description of the persons involved. The police need to know their age, sex, race, height, hair color and style, obvious marks or tattoos, beards, mustaches, and manner of dress.
- Note if there are any children living on the property. Are they being neglected or abused?
- Offer your property to the police to conduct surveillance.
- If the activity is occurring in a public establishment complain to the management, and then report it to the police.
What the police can do
- The police cannot arrest a person or search a residence based solely on anonymous information.
- The courts require specific corroborated facts to justify the issuance of a search warrant.
- If narcotic trafficking or other illegal activity is suspected, the police will conduct an investigation.
- The success of the investigation will depend on the type of information you provide, and the extent of your participation.
- This process could take a day, weeks or even months, but there are situations where immediate action can be taken.
Do you have to give your name or go to court?
- You do not have to give your name to report illegal or suspicious activity.
- If you desire to remain confidential, your name will not be released or appear on any public document.
- If you have specific information regarding illegal activity and you are willing to provide an official statement, most likely immediate police action can be taken.
- Your information can be presented to the court, and in many instances, a search warrant can be obtained. In such cases, there is a possibility that you would be required to testify in court, but there are many ways in which the police can use your information without having to divulge your identity.
- Whether you are willing to provide your name or not, your information is valuable.
A narcotics investigator from the Middletown Township Police Department will be glad to answer any of your questions, or discuss with you the best way to approach a narcotics problem in your neighborhood.