LPD shuts down illegal business

Published 12:00 am Monday, July 10, 2006

Selling sweet treats to people around the neighborhood may seem like no big deal.

However, running a business without a license is a crime and getting caught without a permit may lead to the same consequences as taking candy from a baby.

The Linden Police Department executed a search warrant around 10 p.m. on Thursday, July 29, 2006, in a Linden Housing Authority apartment.

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Police have been conducting an investigation on this location, rented to Johnny Lucy, for several weeks after receiving complaints of people hanging around the location using or selling drugs.

Upon arriving, police learned that Lucy, age 42, was operating a store out of his apartment.

After making a buy from the apartment, Linden officers obtained a search warrant and seized a large amount of grocery items, which Lucy had purchased from Sam’s and was selling in a store-like atmosphere.

The Linden resident was given a citation for operating a business without a license and will appear in Linden Municipal Court on July 27, 2006.

Sgt. Scott McClure led the investigation that eventually led to multiple arrests.

“Sgt. McClure led the investigation and his efforts led to us executing a search warrant and to shutting the business down,” chief Jeff Laduron said. “One of our goals is to stop people from just hanging around drinking and doing other things. This place was a hangout. Most of the time when you get a crowd, sooner or later there will be trouble.”

As officers were leaving the area, some witnesses threw rocks at the police cars as they drove away. Thus, police ordered the street cleared. Those who refused to leave were arrested on charges of failing to disperse.

No one was injured during the arrests and no drugs were found at the apartment.

“I appreciate the ones in that area who are coming to us and reporting the problems,” Laduron said. “We will continue to work hard to clean up the area.”