During a month-long crackdown on crack and prostitution, from December 1st through 31st, 2006, undercover detectives from the PCSO Bureau of Special Investigations arrested 279 people, and seized over 5 kilograms of cocaine.
Of the 279 arrests, 122 were drug-related (cocaine, marijuana, and meth.); 122 were vice (prostitution) and gang-related; and 35 were for miscellaneous charges. During several different investigations, detectives served 3 search warrants, stopped 165 vehicles, and made 964 citizen contacts.
The operation focused on taking drugs and those who solicit others to commit prostitution off the streets. Detectives also focused on those who derive support from the proceeds of prostitution. Forfeiture proceedings have been initiated for the Holiday Motel in Lake Wales, and the Prestler’s Motel in Lakeland, after the owners/operators of these establishments were found to be profiting from the illegal activities being conducted there.
Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd says, “If you are found here in Polk County with illegal narcotics in your possession or selling drugs to others, we will put you in jail. And if you are offering to commit prostitution in our county or profiting from it, you’ll go to jail too. There are too many honest ways to make a living to have to resort to these types of illegal activities. Our detectives will continue to conduct operations like these to weed out the drugs and prostitutes from our community.”