By joe gorman
Police Chief Rod Foley says he may be focusing extra resources on the North Side even after a pair of robbery suspects are caught.
Officers from the city and Youngstown State University police working marked and unmarked details arrested three more people late Thursday and early Friday on drug charges, as they run several extra patrols.
Police are looking for a pair of men or teens they believe are responsible for five armed robberies since late last Saturday.
Those arrests bring the number of people arrested on drug or gun charges to six, with an additional person cited.
Officers also found three guns since the patrols started, Foley said.
Most often, police stop to question people who are walking on the street instead of using the sidewalk, which is a violation of city ordinances, and those people either run or admit they are carrying something illegal.
Foley said he and his staff were surprised at the amount of illegal activity they found.
He said there is a lot of marijuana use in the area, but police have been finding heroin and crack cocaine this week, as well as the guns. He said the area may get a little more extra attention once the robbery case is finished.
“We really need to step on this area because there are people walking around who have no fear about carrying guns,” Foley said.
Early Friday, YSU police working in plainclothes were on the lookout for one of two men who ran from city police earlier in the evening. They came across Leonard Crockett, 36, on Emerson Place near Short Street. Crockett matched the description of one of the men who ran, reports said.
Crockett was sweating heavily and smelled of marijuana. He admitted he had a small bag of marijuana, and when an officer tried to take it out of his pocket, he ran and was caught by the YSU officers on Oxford Avenue near Foster Avenue.
Reports said the officers found 15.3 grams of heroin on Crockett, as well as 8.7 grams of crack cocaine, three pills, a small bag of marijuana, a small bag of hashish and $491 in cash. He was taken to the Mahoning County jail and arraigned on felony charges of possession of heroin and possession of cocaine and several misdemeanor drug charges. He is in the jail on $35,000 bond.
About 11:20 p.m. Thursday, Kalvin Franklin, 50, the man city police were chasing earlier, was arrested on charges of obstructing justice, resisting arrest and possession of marijuana.
He was riding a bicycle that did not have the required lights or reflectors on Fairgreen Avenue.
When officers stopped to talk to him, he dropped the bike and took off running, reports said. When he was caught, he struggled and had to be stunned before he allowed himself to be handcuffed.
He also was taken to the jail and arraigned on the charges of obstruction of official business, resisting arrest and possession of marijuana after a small amount of marijuana was found on him. His bond was set at $5,000.
About 10 p.m. in the 400 block of Lora Avenue, Irvin Jamar Brandon, 19, was stopped for walking in the street in the 400 block of Lora Avenue, and police found 16 bags of marijuana on him.
He was arrested on drug charges and a warrant and taken to the jail. His bond also was set at $5,000.
Foley said police have several people of interest for the robberies they are focusing on, and extra patrols will continue until the robbers are caught.