Memphis police announce drug, gun arrests, ask homeowners to keep inventories
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Memphis police announced Monday that they have arrested hundreds of suspects this summer on outstanding warrants and as a result of investigations into drug and gun sales.
And the police department used the announcement of the arrests to highlight the problem of stolen guns.
The police asked people to create inventories of guns and other valuables to help in the event of theft. The department advertised its forms for copying down serial numbers and other identifying details of valuable items, and also suggested taking pictures of these items. Those inventory forms are online at memphispolice.org under the tab “Forms and reports.”
The police department recommends keeping an inventory sheet of valuables in a safe place, such as a bank safe deposit box, and using it after a theft to help police pursue missing items.
A screen shot of a firearms inventory sheet from the Memphis Police Department. (Photo: Memphis Police Department web site)
Police officials spoke about the issue in a news conference at the Organized Crime Unit office in Downtown Memphis. A podium was set up in front of a display of dozens of seized weapons. Most of them were semi-automatic pistols, and some of them were marked with signs that said “stolen.”
The department also displayed seized drugs, including several big bags of marijuana that gave off a pungent smell.
Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland said local authorities will arrest and prosecute people who sell drugs and guns.
A total of 237 felony arrests and 203 misdemeanor arrests were made during Operation Summer Heat II, Memphis Police Director Michael Rallings said Monday.
Rallings described it as a proactive enforcement effort in high-crime areas. It ran during an eight-week period from June 9 to Aug. 3.
In addition to guns and drugs, the operation pursued suspects with warrants.
Officers also issued 76 misdemeanor citations, three juvenile summons and three city ordinance citations, he said.
Among the drugs found were 44 pounds of marijuana and 2.8 kilograms of methamphetamine, Rallings said. A total of 105 guns were seized.
Various Memphis police divisions were involved, along with the Multi-Agency Gang Unit, which includes representatives of the police and Sheriff’s office along with federal officials.
And the department brought to a close a long-term drug investigation that had begun in January 2017. Dubbed Operation Jack Rabbit, the authorities indicted 55 people on July 31 and arrested 31 of them on Friday and Saturday. Warrants have been issued for the others.
They also arrested 16 other people on unrelated drug charges or warrants. Eight handguns and a military-style rifle were seized.
Rallings said the Operation Jack Rabbit roundup seized 1.8 grams of heroin, 52.6 grams of powered cocaine, 10 grams of crack cocaine, 449 grams of marijuana, plus various other drugs.
The amount of drugs seized in the two operations was small compared to some past seizures. In 2013, for instance, police announced they’d seized more than a ton of marijuana at a house on Reenie in the National Cemetery area.
Reach reporter Daniel Connolly at 529-5296, [email protected], or on Twitter at @danielconnolly.
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