“Looking out of my office window at Wisconsin Avenue and O Street on Wednesday morning, Dec. 4, suddenly I saw between 10 and 15 police cars pull up, some going the wrong way. At least 20 officers dressed in black, some carrying weapons, trotted up the avenue to a pop-up store on 1432 Wisconsin Avenue,” one eyewitness told The Georgetowner. “Next thing I see are three men handcuffed with hands behind their backs and being taken to police cars.”
The raid was almost a repeat of another on Tuesday at 33rd Street and Wisconsin Avenue.
“There were three arrests yesterday [Dec. 3] and four arrests today [Dec. 4],” Metropolitan Police Department Second District Commander Duncan Bedlion told The Georgetowner.
“A few weeks ago, we began to receive an uptick in citizen complaints about drug activity and even a report of hearing gunshots,” Bedlion wrote to Georgetown Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner Joe Gibbons. “Thanks to the hard work of our Crime Suppression Team, a search warrant was executed at the location acting as a marijuana ‘pop-up’ and the three subjects were arrested. In addition to the arrests, a large amount of narcotics were seized.”
“These quick actions were also a result of close cooperation and partnership of neighbors and community organizations like CAG,” Gibbons said. “It’s good for everyone to know we are all working together to have legal, safe businesses.”
Possession of minimal amounts [two ounces] of marijuana for personal use was made legal in the District in 2014. Transfers of marijuana can also be made, but it cannot be sold. The law reads: “transfer without payment up to one ounce of marijuana to another person 21 years of age or older.” And you can’t smoke it in any public place; there is a $25 fine if caught. Some establishments will give a portion of marijuana as a legal gift for a purchase of a store item.
“Thank you to the community for sharing your concerns so that we could take quick action. You may also follow these cases through the court process and contribute a victim impact statement if applicable,” Bedlion emailed Gibbons. “Our Community Prosecutor Doug Klein can assist for those that are interested. His email is email@example.com.”
The store that was raided on Wisconsin Avenue is called Up N Down. “It had only been there a month or so,” said Leslie Maysak, executive director of the Citizens Association of Georgetown, whose office is across the street from the crime scene.