PITTSTON, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — You might call it a sign of the times but it’s a sign you don’t want to be posted in front of your house.
Pittston police, in conjunction with neighboring police departments, are posting a sign on homes after they arrest a person or person who was allegedly selling drugs out of the home.
Pittston City Police say that sign has been very effective in sending a loud and clear message drug dealers are not welcome.
Pittston police say they got the idea from investigators in other parts of the nation and they say they are getting rave reviews from the public except from alleged drug dealers.
“Well, this guy ran by me with a rifle with police on the back of their shirt I said alright,” said Frank from Pittston.
Frank lives near the home in the 100 block of Lambert Street in Pittson that was raided by police.
38-year-old Johnnie Witherspoon is facing a slew of drug charges. Police placed this sign on the front porch it reads “This drug hose closed for business courtesy of the Pittston City Police Department.”
“At first, I was surprised every year I hope they do this like every six months,” says Frank.
Pittston police Chief Kyle Shumosic says if need be they will.
“We’re going to root them out. Arrest them, and prosecute them to the fullest extent by using whatever resources we have. Whether that be through work with the state police, county agencies with the FBI, or any resource available to us. we’re going to find them,” explained Chief Shumosic.
The chief says the signs are getting the desired results.
“There are a lot of fans of the sign a lot of fans that come out of neighborhoods that like when were are out there conducting operations. We’re taking the drug dealers off the street. We’ve seen a very positive response in the community,” continued Chief Shumosic.
That response he says includes an increase in the number of tips from the public about possible drug dealing in the city Mayor Mike Lombardo says these investigations take time.
“They don’t happen overnight and they are constant. I mean this isn’t a battle you win so we had a victory this week but we can’t sit back on our hands and think it’s ok. This is not burying your head in the sand it’s constant,” said Mayor Lombardo.
Investigators urge anyone with information about drug dealing not only in Pittston but in any community in northeastern Pennsylvania to call the police those calls are kept confidential.