DETROIT (WJBK) - Over three days, law enforcement from 22 different agencies arrested 187 people and charged them with 125 felonies in what police have dubbed 'Operation Smackdown'.
The massive sweep was done in Macomb and Wayne Counties to fight the opioid epidemic that's gripping Metro Detroit. On Friday, Roseville Police Chief James Berlin showed off the massive amount of drugs and drug paraphernalia found.
Piles of pills, guns, scales, and syringes were on display on Friday and are just a small part of Operation Smackdown.
"If nothing else, we disrupted the heroin chain for at least a few days. We have some of the dealers looking over their shoulders; they don't know if they're dealing with a cop or an addict," Berlin said.
Operation Smackdon was just three days long but it netted 187 arrests on 125 felonies. Ffrom Wednesday to Friday afternoon, 100 officers from 22 state, federal, and local agencies banded together in the fourth operation. This time, they were cracking down on so-called "dial-a-dope" operations.
"You call up and they send a runner to go meet you on corner somewhere."
Operation Smack down was planned for months and Detroit police alone issued 25 search warrants.
The total amount of drugs seized is still being calculated but Berlin said the spans both prescriptions and street drugs.
"We seized heroin, cocaine, crack cocaine, marijuana, and an ungodly amount of analogues or opioid pills, etc." Berlin said.
While arresting dealers and transporters, cops also arrested addicts and offered them assistance from Families Against Narcotics (FAN).
"We want to give them every opportunity to get into drug court or the Hope not Handcuffs program... to get clean," said Macomb County Judge and FAN president Linda Davis.
"it's so important that they have info on public programs so they're not left suffering with own addiction."
Davis said cops everywhere are targeting pill mills on the internet and doctors. In recent years, the number of prescriptions have more than quadrupled.
"There were 958 billion prescriptions written last year for these drugs. We've become a pill-popping nation."
Cops say this is step forward and they ask for your help: dispose of your unused prescriptions or drop them off at a drop-off site. The death toll from pills and heroin is expected to continue and double each year.
"If you do have narcotics in your home make sure you lock them up safely, treat them like you would a loaded gun."