2010-03-05 / Front Page

Drug Sweep Hits Hammel Houses

By Howard Schwach
Police officers from the 100 Precinct in Rockaway Park and several other specialized units, including the crime control bureau and the special operations division, hit the Hammel Houses early on Wednesday morning, sweeping up at least 50 locals who were wanted on various drug-related charges or who were present when the warrants were executed.

A police van from the Crime Control Bureau sits in front of the Hammel Houses on Wednesday morning. Photo by Susan Locke A police van from the Crime Control Bureau sits in front of the Hammel Houses on Wednesday morning. Photo by Susan Locke Deputy Inspector Thomas Barrett, the commanding officer of the 100 Precinct, led the team of police officers who executed 10 search warrants in the Hammel Houses and nearby locations.

One additional warrant was executed at the Edgemere Houses as well.

Police sources say that the Wednesday morning raids came as a part of a longtime undercover narcotics investigation in Rockaway’s public housing projects, in which the undercover cops bought large quantities of narcotics from the present defendants.

In January of 2008, a drug sweep at the Hammel Houses netted 34 narcotics arrests.

In February of 2007, cops busted 42 drug dealers at the Hammel Houses. In that four-month undercover operation, cops made 150 separate buys of cocaine and marijuana.

Many of those arrested in the sweeps were members of the Bloods and Get It In Bricks (GIB) gangs.

In June of 2008, police officers from the 100 Precinct Housing Unit executed a search warrant at the Hammel Houses arresting three residents and confiscating several weapons, including a machine pistol, as well as a quantity of heroin.

Both police sources and a spokesperson for Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said that they were still sorting out the defendants and the possible charges against them as The Wave went to press.

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