El Mirage police make 21 arrests in drug investigation
PHOENIX — Nearly two dozen people were arrested on Tuesday in El Mirage following a five-month drug and firearm investigation, authorities said.
The investigation into four properties on the same street near Thompson Ranch Road and the U.S. 60 began in July, the El Mirage Police Department said in a press release.
More than 50 people were seen making drug purchases, resulting in 21 arrests.
Over 400 fentanyl pills, several hundred grams of methamphetamine and a firearm were also seized during the execution of the search warrant.
One of the suspects in the investigation faces drug and arson charges after they were linked to multiple fires near Luna Street, including a dumpster fire near businesses.
Some of those arrested were discovered to be on probation and prohibited from having a firearm. Their identities have not been made public.
“Those selling drugs on Luna Street have poisoned our community, and I directed my team to address this issue to give those living nearby a safer El Mirage,” Police Chief Paul Marzocca said in the release.
“The Neighborhood Enforcement Team’s mission is to reduce gun violence and improve the neighborhood quality of life.”
Several people on the properties where search warrants were being carried out were experiencing homelessness and were provided resources by the Phoenix Rescue Mission.
Twelve dogs were removed across the four properties by the city of Surprise Police Department’s Animal Control Unit, which resulted in animal cruelty charges due to the state of the dogs’ conditions.
The State Gang Task Force, Glendale and Surprise police department and Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office and Adult Probation assisted in the investigation.
No additional information was available.