BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A major bust near the Lexington Market, after Baltimore City police raided a liquor store they say they was operating as a drug shop for months.
Multiple people were arrested, including the store’s owners.
Baltimore PD is making a bigger effort to crack down on these types of businesses.
Police say drugs were dropped off at the store every morning or multiple times a week.
Police Commissioner Darryl De Sousa called the area challenged, and one they were familiar with.
Eutaw Liquors was said to be fueling drugs, violence, and shootings.
Crack cocaine, marijuana, and thousands of dollars in cash were all seized from the liquor store right in the heart of Eutaw St.
“The community at-large doesn’t want to see to this type of crap,” said Baltimore PD spokesman T.J. Smith.
Eutaw Liquors is now shut down – padlocked – after authorities say it was wreaking havoc on the community.
Police arrested and pinned several people in connection with the crimes, honing in on the two owners, a husband and wife.
“I was like ‘Wow, how did that happen?,'” said Mimi Tran, owner of Mimi’s Nails.
Tran’s nail shop is right next door. She says there was constant traffic and crowds outside the shop.
“I constantly have to call 911 for them to come down and clear it up for me,” she said.
It was in 2016 when police shut down a gas station off Windsor Mill that was harboring drugs and weapons for a lethal gang, and Eutaw Liquors is now the latest business to be padlocked.
“We don’t think it’s a trend, but I think people know there are some businesses that harbor and facilitate drug dealing, and then that of course brings violence with it,” Smith added.
Smith says padlocking businesses if often a last resort.
“We don’t want to create another problem by shutting down a business and having that business vacant,” he added.
For those still flying under the radar, the message is simple.
“If there’s businesses who choose to operate outside the law, we’re going to come after them,” Commissioner De Sousa said.
Officers engaging with the community on foot patrol were tipped off about the drug activity.
Since 2007, police haven’t even padlocked 10 businesses, showing you just how rare these occasions are.
The liquor board has revoked the store’s license.
Police say some of the employees are convicted felons, and now face additional gun charges.
On top of the drugs found, police say they also recovered powdered prescription medications.