Community concerns prompted 14 Division police to undergo a three-week street-level drug investigation in Toronto’s downtown west end.
On Nov. 26, 14 Division’s Major Crime Unit started Project Open Concept, which focused on eight areas within the division: Queen Street West and Dowling Avenue; Queen Street West and Jameson Avenue; Queen Street West and Bathurst Street; King Street West and Dufferin Street; King Street West and Strachan Avenue; Dundas Street West and Spadina Avenue; College Street and Spadina Avenue and Bloor Street West; and Ossington Avenue.
The project was started in response to community concerns about drug dealers and users in those areas as well as analysis of complaints from the community, Crime Stoppers tips, occurrence reports, records of arrest, previous drug projects and statistics provided by the 14 Division crime analyst.
In many of these areas, the sale and use of illicit drugs has a direct relationship with levels of robberies, assaults and break-and-enters, police said.
According to a press release on Project Open Concept, undercover officers made 14 opportunity drug purchases, 26 people were arrested, 87 charges were laid and police seized crack cocaine, marijuana and Psilocybin with a total street value of about $5,000.
“The end of the project does not mark the end of our officers’ commitment to improve the quality of life for all who reside, work or conduct their legal businesses in the division,” the 14 Division release said.
“As part of the maintenance program, we have and will continue to increase uniform patrols in these neighbourhoods. Officers will be conducting compliance checks on any of those arrested who were released on bail to ensure they are abiding by the conditions set out in their releases.”