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How to spot a drug stash house in your neighborhood

Posted at 10:28 PM, Dec 14, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-15 00:28:28-05

Two people are behind bars after a suspected meth house raid near Tucson's Northwest side on Wednesday. These drug stash houses can be hidden in any neighborhood, according to the Pima County Sheriff's Department.

"They're out there, they're in every neighborhood that you could possibly imagine," Deputy Cody Gress said. "Some that you'd expect, some that you won't expect."

They say there are a variety of signs that may lead law enforcement and neighbors to believe a home is a drug distribution and stash house.

"People that seem strange to the neighborhood, people that are always different, you're never seeing the same people over and over again," Gress said. "Constant strangers in and out, at all hours of the night as well. Even the owners, being rather distant. Strange activity happening at all hours of the day."

Another one: people not using their front door and garage door to go in and out of their homes.

Last month, a multi-agency drug raid across Tucson ended up putting more than a dozen people behind bars. Gress says the Sheriff's Department is working closely with other law enforcement to bust these drug stache and distribution homes.

"To really crack down on these stash houses, on these distribution centers," Gress said. "Because Tucson is such a hotbed for that with the border."

Gress says these distribution and stash houses are not treated lightly -- and can pose dangerous situations in a neighborhood.

"Those are going to be your most dangerous because someone is there to protect it," he said. "And there might be that expectation that someone is there to protect it."

According to the Drug Enforcement Administration, 1,704 pounds (773 kg) of methamphetamine was seized by the DEA in Arizona this year; 207 pounds (95.6 kg) coming from Pima County.