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Note: if you witness an event that may lead to immediate threat to human health or safety, you should report it to your local police or law enforcement authority..
Use the links below to report what appears to you as a possible violation of controlled substances laws and regulations. Violations including unlawful purchasing of prescription drugs over the Internet, illegal prescription drug sales, illicit drug distribution or extortion scams.
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How to Get Rid of Drug Dealers in Your Neighborhood
Last Updated: April 14, 2023 References
This article was co-authored by Saul Jaeger, MS . Saul Jaeger is a Police Officer and Captain of the Mountain View, California Police Department (MVPD). Saul has over 17 years of experience as a patrol officer, field training officer, traffic officer, detective, hostage negotiator, and as the traffic unit’s sergeant and Public Information Officer for the MVPD. At the MVPD, in addition to commanding the Field Operations Division, Saul has also led the Communications Center (dispatch) and the Crisis Negotiation Team. He earned an MS in Emergency Services Management from the California State University, Long Beach in 2008 and a BS in Administration of Justice from the University of Phoenix in 2006. He also earned a Corporate Innovation LEAD Certificate from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business in 2018. There are 8 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 602,007 times.
If you've got drug activity in your neighborhood, it makes sense that you'd want to deal with it as quickly and safely as possible. Unfortunately, this is one of those situations where solving the problem can be easier said than done. If you haven't reported the issue yet, you probably want to start there. Beyond that, there are a number of strategies that may help. We've detailed the most effective approaches here, using advice from organizations like the National Crime Prevention Council, so you can be sure you're taking the steps that are most likely to result in a safer neighborhood.
Identifying Neighborhood Drug Activity
- Excessive foot traffic to and from a house and loitering may be signs that illicit activity is occurring.
- Another suspicious pattern is the presence of many cars that stop at the house for a short period of time and then leave.
- Other possible signs of drug activity include graffiti and gang activity in the area, although these are not always linked.
- If you find evidence of drug paraphernalia, don't collect it or look around for additional materials. Take note of where you found it, what type of paraphernalia it was, what time of day you discovered it, and on what date, and report those details to the police.
- If you observe suspicious traffic activity, take notes of license plate numbers, car models and colors, and approximate times of visits.
- If you are concerned about a particular individual, write down a detailed description including height, build, hair color, and any identifying features. Also include the circumstances that have caused your suspicion.
- If you feel that the situation is dangerous, be cautious. Do not openly collect information, take photographs, or do other things that might provoke a hostile dealer. Remember: if they are operating in your neighborhood, they may know who you are.
- Call from a safe place. Don't place a call where potential dealers can hear or see you. Don't tell suspected dealers that you will call the police.
- Always contact the police and allow them to handle drug activities. Attempting to stop these crimes yourself may cause you or others harm. It may also cause difficulties in prosecuting criminal cases related to the activity later.
- Don't be afraid to reach out to police! You never know what piece of information is going to solve a crime or crack a case.
Reducing Neighborhood Drug Activity
- Post signs and publicize the presence of your Neighborhood Watch. Knowing that the area is under observation will often persuade dealers to move out of your neighborhood to an area that is less patrolled.
- Never attempt to apprehend a drug dealer yourself. This only creates a situation where people could be seriously harmed or even killed.
- Get together with neighbors and arrange for “positive loitering,” where members of the club do things like sweep the streets, pick up litter, and do other activities near where drugs are sold. The constant presence of people may dissuade drug dealers that operate in public places.
- Go to community meetings together. Many communities have safety training meetings, police meetings, and other events and activities where you can learn more about how to keep your neighborhood safe.
- Definitely avoid having meetings at any one individual's house, as this could provide dealers with a target for revenge.
- If you don’t know who is in charge of the property, your local tax office can usually provide you with information about the owner, landlord, or property manager.
Preventing Neighborhood Drug Activity
- Hosting activities such as community cook-outs, block parties, and other events will help you get to know your neighbors and strengthen your community.  X Research source
- Work with local churches, businesses, social services, and police to provide resources and training. Young people can be very effective peer anti-drug educators.
Video . By using this service, some information may be shared with YouTube.
- Children require alternatives to drugs, so work with your community to ensure quality opportunities for them. ⧼thumbs_response⧽ Helpful 9 Not Helpful 2
- Remember that things like graffiti, behavior that seems unfamiliar to you, and even gang activity do not necessarily mean that you’re dealing with a drug dealer in your area. Be watchful, but don’t jump to conclusions. ⧼thumbs_response⧽ Helpful 8 Not Helpful 6
- Always let the police deal with potential drug dealers. Attempting to apprehend a suspect yourself could cause you or others serious harm, even death. ⧼thumbs_response⧽ Helpful 16 Not Helpful 3
- Use common sense when dealing with potential drug activity. Don’t openly threaten drug dealers, and don’t do anything that makes you feel unsafe. Don’t provoke retaliation. ⧼thumbs_response⧽ Helpful 13 Not Helpful 5
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- ↑ http://www.accesskansas.org/kbi/info/docs/pdf/Is%20That%20House%20a%20Drug%20House%20brochure.pdf
- ↑ http://community.seattletimes.nwsource.com/archive/?date=19920528&slug=1494222
- ↑ http://www.lexingtonky.gov/Modules/ShowDocument.aspx?documentid=12459
- ↑ http://www.lapdonline.org/crime_prevention/content_basic_view/8767
- ↑ https://www.ncpc.org/resources/home-neighborhood-safety/strategies/strategy-starting-neighborhood-watch-groups/
- ↑ http://www.tallaco.com/content.asp?id=84306
- ↑ https://www.ncpc.org/resources/home-neighborhood-safety/strategies/strategy-safer-design-of-public-areas-in-neighborhoods/
- ↑ https://www.ncpc.org/resources/home-neighborhood-safety/strategies/strategy-youth-led-community-service-projects/
About This Article
Seeing drug dealers in your neighborhood can be scary, but you can get rid of them by watching for suspicious activity, like excessive loitering around a certain house or odd smells, and reporting it to the police as soon as possible. Never try to apprehend a drug dealer by yourself, or you might get hurt. Instead, find a safe place and contact the police. In addition to increasing police activity, work with local businesses and places of worship to clean up the neighborhood, and establish youth centers to keep young people from getting involved with drugs. Consider asking officials if abandoned lots can be turned into parks or playgrounds, which will help drive out dealers. If your area needs extra surveillance, ask your local police and community members to establish a Neighborhood Watch that can patrol the streets. For more tips, like how to repair municipal problems that attract drug dealers, read on. Did this summary help you? Yes No
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How to anonymously report drug dealing.
By Jann Seal
March 13, 2020
Reviewed by Melissa McCall, J.D., M.S.
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- Examples of Cyber Crime
Drug overdoses and the deaths they cause have dominated the headlines in recent years. No longer does the term overdose refer to “hard” drugs like heroin, cocaine or ecstasy. Opioid use has risen dramatically, and the death rate has escalated.
That hooded drug dealer swapping out foil-wrapped illicit packages for cash in the dark of night has now been joined by white collar doctors, pharmacists and pain management clinicians. Reporting drug dealers to the authorities be anonymous and may save lives.
Death by Drugs
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that deaths from opioids surpassed those from the harder drugs in 2017, with synthetic opioids such as fentanyl listed as the most powerful and deadliest. As opioids continue to be the main driver of drug deaths in America, the sale of these drugs is occurring in the open. Waiting rooms in pain clinics are jammed with people of all ages anxious to pick up their pills, just as street sellers troll for customers in cities large and small.
However, anyone can become part of a silent posse aimed at curtailing this deadly business by reporting suspected drug dealers through a network of anonymous outlets.
Drug Enforcement Administration Website
The Drug Enforcement Administration's website is far reaching and covers the illicit growing, manufacturing, selling or any type of trafficking of controlled substances. The site is categorized into the types of drugs being reported, medical outlets, pharmacies and online sales. The site includes a recommendation that if someone fears an immediate life threat, it should be reported to local authorities as well.
National Anonymous Tip Hotlines
Fear of reprisal and a reluctance to get involved are the main reasons anonymous hotlines exist. The general population is as well informed as the local authorities as to what is going on in their community. Tapping into that source of information helps get the crimes off the street and the criminals behind bars.
“This is the WeTip Crime Hotline. Do not give your name or identify yourself in any way,” is the first thing callers hear when they call WeTip, a national hotline used to report the use and sale of drugs. The provided, anonymous information is turned over to local authorities for follow up.
Crime Stoppers for Reporting Narcotics Activity
Crime Stoppers is an international, non-profit organization dedicated to anonymously reporting crimes. Narcotics activity is a major focus of Crime Stoppers, and all callers are given a code number for identification. If the tip leads to an arrest, the caller is given a reward for the information.
Government Crime Stoppers, an arm of Crime Stoppers USA, is open to reports of governmental workers who may be involved in enabling drug dealers to continue their operations behind the backs of law enforcement.
Local Drug Hotlines
Operation Unite, an anonymous drug tip hotline in Kentucky, reaches into communities to not only report illicit drug activities, but to provide educational and social outlets aimed at activities for children and adults, keeping them involved in healthy alternatives to drugs. This type of drug reporting outlet is the mainstay of many communities fighting the drug epidemic. Another example of local organizations is the Hanley Foundation, active in 15 Florida counties, which targets both teens and adults through educational programs aimed at curbing alcohol and drug abuse.
Most cities and states offer similar anonymous outlets in the effort to curtail drug operations. It takes the involvement of the total population to curtail death by drugs and to ensure the imprisonment of the enablers. Reporting anonymously is the first step. Read More: What Is Drug Court?
- Drug Enforcement Administration: Do You Have a Tip for DEA?
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Drug Overdose Deaths
- U.S. Department of Justice: Diversion Control Division
- WeTip: Drug Crimes Reporting Hotline
- Operation Unite: Drug Tip Line
- Government Crime Stoppers
- If you suspect drug dealing around your home, place of work or inside your child's school, seek law enforcement help immediately.
A writer for many years, Jann has contributed to television programming revolving around legal issues, written for magazines and web sites regarding the law, and her manuals on real estate law specifics are used in real estate schools in Florida.
- How to Report Drug Abuse
- Definition of Proactive Policing
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What to do if you Suspect Your Neighbours of Drug Offences
Quite often it may take some time for you to realise that neighbours living nearby may be involved with the supplying or buying of drugs. The whole world of illegal drug dealing is often a ‘cloak and dagger’ affair where activities are carried out in a very quiet, unassuming manner and there is often no specific ‘visual’ clues as to what a drug dealer looks like. Many of them can be dressed very smartly and drive around in luxury cars.
It’s also a myth to assume that drug dealing only occurs in deprived pockets of inner city areas. While this stereotypical assumption is perfectly understandable as many inner city communities are indeed blighted by the supply and use of illegal drugs, they are certainly not the only areas where drugs are a problem. In fact, this is far from being the truth.
Expensive suburbs and rural areas can have a problem with drugs and it’s not just a matter of ‘down and outs’ and those who you might assume would be your ‘typical’ drug dealer or drug addict who will always be on the lookout for their next ‘fix’. Many professional people whom you might think are responsible citizens and even ‘role models’ within your local community can fall prey to drug addiction. Therefore, drug dealing and related offences can occur just about anywhere.
Spotting The Signs
What you should be observing, if you’re worried about being identified.
Drugs and drug dealing have the potential to ravage a neighbourhood and can, left unchecked, turn what may once have been a prosperous and peaceful neighbourhood into one which becomes riddled by crime and anti-social behaviour. Therefore, it is important that you act as soon as possible if you’ve a strong suspicion that drug offences are taking place within your neighbourhood, as failure to act quickly will often mean that the problems associated with drug offences will only escalate and further disrupt and damage your local community.
Use this page to report what appears to you as a possible violation of controlled substances laws and regulations. Violations may include the growing, manufacture, distribution or trafficking of controlled substances. Your information will be reviewed promptly by a DEA special agent or a professional staff member.
There are reasons why you may want to report drug activity in your neighborhood, including: Being the landlord of the property and agonizing about the legal issues that may ensue. Worrying about the safety of others, including children, who may live in or near the house where you suspect the activity is taking place.
How to Report Illegal Drug Activity Download Article methods 1 Making a Report 2 Determining Whether There is Illegal Activity 3 Knowing Why You Should Speak Up Other Sections Related Articles Co-authored by Saul Jaeger, MS Last Updated: January 18, 2023 References
NOTE: If you witness an event that may lead to immediate threat to human health or safety, you should report it to your local police or law enforcement authority. Use the links below to report what appears to you as a possible violation of controlled substances laws and regulations. Violations including unlawful purchasing of prescription drugs ...
Anyone who wants to report drug activity can contact Crime Stoppers via phone or online. A national tip line is available 24/7, and the program also operates out of local offices. Witnesses to drug crimes can make an anonymous phone call or fill out an online form.
If you suspect that there are drug dealings going on in your neighborhood, look for warning signs. Visitors at strange hours, blocked-up windows, and odd smells may be signs of drug activity.  Excessive foot traffic to and from a house and loitering may be signs that illicit activity is occurring.
Crime Stoppers for Reporting Narcotics Activity. Crime Stoppers is an international, non-profit organization dedicated to anonymously reporting crimes. Narcotics activity is a major focus of Crime Stoppers, and all callers are given a code number for identification. If the tip leads to an arrest, the caller is given a reward for the information.
If you do suspect a neighbour of being involved with some form of drug dealing or trafficking whether as a seller or buyer, you should inform the police. What You Should Be Observing To help police with their investigations, you should Keep A Record Of Your Observations.