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Pembroke to enforce 'zero tolerance' policy
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the zero tolerance policy is a wonderful idea.

"More power to them," she said. "Anything they can do to bring down the drugs and burglaries is a good thing."

Strickland said the economy wasn’t helping crime matters any, which is one of the reasons he believes the city saw an increase in burglaries in January - there were eight reported in January this year and only 3 from January 2008.

He said the burglaries are believed to be the work of a local group called "the crew," consisting of six to eight men who work the area between Pembroke and Claxton. The break-ins have been occurring in broad daylight, he said. Four were reported on Jan. 6 by late afternoon, which is when he said he’d "had enough," and decided to bump up patrols immediately.

Strickland called in additional part time officers and five of them, including the chief, hit the streets until 11:30 p.m., stopping only 30 minutes to eat.

They continue to ride the streets, he said.

On Feb. 6, one small drug arrest for $5 worth of marijuana allegedly led to finding another man that same evening on police property, yards from the precinct, with 19 more bags of marijuana on him.

"He was arrested on police department property. If it’s going on right here, you can imagine what’s happening further out," Strickland said.

Two guys were arrested Feb. 7, according to Strickland, when officers went to serve a robbery warrant. The guys ran, but were caught, he said.

"These two have information regarding the burglaries and have been cooperating fully

Pembroke police say they’re operating under a zero tolerance policy in response to a recent rash of burglaries and drug arrests in the area.

People will be stopped, question and arrested if that’s what it comes to, Interim Police Chief Stacy Strickland said.

"If someone looks like they are somewhere they don’t belong, they will be stopped," he said, "and, probable cause can come from an expired tag, a tail light out, a teen being out after 12 a.m. city curfew, or a person stopping their destination between point A and B."

Barbara Starling, a former state worker who lives at the Pembroke city line said she thinks with the investigation," Strickland said.

The people who are doing these violent crimes "are a scourge on the city, and are only going to get more violent if they’re not stopped," Strickland said. "We’re going to get them."

Strickland said Pembroke police are already seeing a noticeable affect in the number of burglaries being reported.

"We had seven burglaries reported within a two week period in January. Three more were reported sporadically since the crackdown over a month ago, and none have been reported since the last week of January," he said, "but we are still keeping our eyes open."

More drugs allegedly were found Feb. 11.

In a press release, Pembroke PD announced a drug arrest at a safety check at the intersection of Ashbranch Road and Harry Hagin Road.

According to the release, the tag on the truck was expired and "during the encounter between officers, driver and passenger, officers became suspicious of drug activity."

The officers searched the passenger and her belongings after getting consent, finding pills and a "snorting straw" in her possession, the release said.

According to the report, the passenger was arrested and confessed to owning the drugs and "snorting straw."

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