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Package intercept coincides with raid

Apr. 05, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

HUNTINGTON -- A recent drug raid along Washington Avenue coincided with authorities' interception of a package mailed to the same address, according to a search warrant affidavit filed in federal court.

That package, sent from Michigan and said to contain 100 grams of heroin, was to have been delivered late morning Wednesday to a home in the 2200 block of Washington Avenue, the affidavit states. The timing and location are consistent with Wednesday's raid, which Huntington Police Chief Skip Holbrook said yielded an undisclosed quantity of heroin.

It came as authorities mount an offensive in the face of increasing heroin abuse, trafficking and overdoses. The ongoing effort recently led to six heroin-related arrests in federal court, the majority involving defendants who have been indicted and now await trial.

Wednesday's raid prompted no immediate arrests, and authorities deem it an ongoing investigation.

The affidavit states a confidential informant tipped off city police to the incoming package. An officer alerted the U.S. Postal Service on Tuesday and authorities soon located the package in the delivery room of its Virginia Avenue post office.

The package bore a return address in Southfield, Mich., a suburb of Detroit, and a delivery address in the 2200 block of Washington Avenue. Both items matched information provided as part of the informant's tip. A police canine also hit on the package, all leading to agents having received the court's permission to search its contents. No property return had been filed as of Thursday.

Holbrook said Wednesday that authorities had received multiple complaints in recent months. Those reports came from people living near the suspected residence and spoke of possible drug activity.

The raid involved the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, the U.S. Postal Service and the Huntington Police Department. It prompted a precautionary, 15-minute lockdown at Central City Elementary.

Follow Curtis Johnson via Twitter @curtisjohnsonHD and http://facebook.com/curtisjohnsonHD.

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