Suspected dealers caught in kids’ park

This Is Wiltshire: Sergeant Scott Hargreave with the drugs found in the park Sergeant Scott Hargreave with the drugs found in the park

THREE people have been arrested after police caught them with £2,000 in hard drugs they were peddling in a children’s play park in broad daylight.

Officers from Wiltshire Police’s Dedicated Crime Team went to the play area near Savernake Street Social Hall after reports of suspicious activity and discovered the two women and a man.

The man, aged 25, attempted to flee but was caught by PC Gareth Snoad and found to have a small amount of cannabis on him.

One of the women, who was aged 28, was found to have wraps of crack cocaine and heroin in her mouth, which she spat out.

Police said there was a woman who was in the park with her children, who may been verbally abused by the trio before officers arrived.

Sergeant Scott Hargreave, who heads up the force’s drugs unit, said: “The thing that concerned me was that this was in a children’s play park, during half-term with parents and young children around, and they were sitting there serving up crack and heroin.”

PC Emma Rice and PC Snoad arrived at the park at 4pm on Thursday following a report of suspicious activity and arrested all three on suspicion of possession with intent to supply.

A strip search by female officers later revealed the 28-year-old was hiding a further £2,000 in crack cocaine and heroin street deals. During a strip search of the the second woman, aged 20, she was found to have a six-inch lock knife.

The drugs were seized and the three people were taken to Gablecross Police Station for questioning on suspicion of possession of class A drugs with intent to supply. They were then bailed.

PC Rice said: “There was a woman in the park with her two children, not far away from the three suspects, and we believe she was subject to verbal abuse. “We approached them and the man tried to run off but did not get far. We found one of the women had about an ounce of crack and heroin on her.

“I’m glad these drugs are off the street and I would encourage anyone in the community to contact us if they see any suspicious activity.”

It is not the first time police have been called to the area over reports of suspicious activity. In April three men robbed a man of £200 in cash as he walked through the park.

Sgt Hargreave said the suspected dealers could be linked to a wider conspiracy.

“The neighbourhood policing team are aware and will be stepping up patrols in the area,” he said.

“It is not just the drug dealing but also the acquisitive crime that comes with it, such as robberies and burglaries and so we want to deter it.

“These three were all from Swindon but we believe they are working for a London network. We anticipate further arrests in relation to this in the near future.”

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