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Five arrested in Fallbrook drug sweep

Five individuals were arrested on various drug charges pertaining to the narcotics methamphetamine and heroin on Saturday, August 14 when officers with the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department conducted a sweep focused on drug use in the downtown Fallbrook area. Two details within the department – the Fallbrook Community Oriented Policing and Problem Solving (COPPS) team and the Gang Enforcement unit from the Vista station worked together to conduct the sweep.

“We patrolled areas that residents have told us they have witnessed drug problems going on in,” said Lt. Mike Barnett, who assumed the position of commander of the Fallbrook Sheriff’s Substation on August 13. “The officers were out and about, conducting traffic stops, making pedestrian contacts, and just doing old-fashioned police work.”

Barnett said some of the roadways focused on, from 4 to 10 p.m. Saturday, were South Mission and South Vine, and officers contacted 32 individuals during the operation.

“Drugs produce physiological changes in people,” said Barnett. “Some drugs, like methamphetamine, produce an elevated heart rate, a distorted sense of time, fidgety movements, and dilated pupils, whereas a drug like heroin does the opposite, it results in a depressed heart rate and constricted pupils.” In addition to noticing the physical signs of drug use, Barnett said officers further investigate to see if needle marks are visible on an individual’s arms or if they are in possession of drug paraphernalia.

“If they are taken into custody, then a blood test is administered; that’s where we get the definitive proof,” he said. .

Barnett said these types of sweeps are vital to reducing criminal activity in the Fallbrook command area.

“The Fallbrook Sheriff’s substation is committed to addressing community concerns through both proactive and reactive operations such as this which target drug offenders and gang members in Fallbrook who are responsible for most of the criminal activity that occurs in the community,” he said.

Barnett said the public can expect more sweeps in the near future. “We plan to do more operations like this.”

The five individuals that were arrested were transported to and booked into the Vista Jail.

“That’s where they belong,” said Barnett.

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