The Division of Public Safety made nine arrests in two days last Monday and Tuesday in connection with people selling illegal drugs. There was a total of 16 drug-related arrests in April.
The arrests were part of a “direct police operation” from DPS in connection with people selling pills near a drug rehabilitation facility near campus known as The Consortium, according to Vice President for Public Safety Maureen Rush. The Consortium, located at 451 S. University Avenue, is near Perelman School of Medicine buildings and the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.
All nine arrests — none of which were affiliated with the University — took place in the vicinity of the intersection of Baltimore and University avenues.
“We’re sending a message loud and clear that drug dealing of any kind will not be welcome on or near campus,” Rush said.
Rush said that the department has been conducting operations like these “on and off” for years, but this was the first large-scale effort in some time.
This operation came as a result of complaints from people in nearby University buildings like Carolyn Hoff Lynch Biology Laboratory. Approximately one year ago, DPS sat down with the leadership of The Consortium to discuss any issues which could arise from the clinic’s presence.
The Consortium is a methadone clinic which helps drug-addicted citizens get clean. It is a private organization not connected to the University. Rush said all nine people arrested were patients of the clinic, but she did not know whether they were coming in or leaving the clinic when the arrests occurred.
A representative for The Consortium could not be reached for comment.
Rush noted that when people are selling drugs on the street in the patrol zone, “it greatly impacts quality of life here at Penn.”
Rush added that people selling drugs on the street pose not just a problem to people affiliated with Penn, but also to the patients at the clinic trying to free themselves from narcotics.
“These methadone patients could also become victims of these people who are trying to push illegal drugs on them,” Rush said.
She added that there have been issues in the past with other offenses, like public urination, being committed by patients who are receiving assistance at The Consortium.Comments powered by Disqus
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