Arrests made as drugs and weapons seized during police raids
Police seized drugs and weapons in a major crackdown in Cannock - as statistics show a reduction in crime across the district.
A samurai sword, machete and two BB guns were recovered by officers after they stormed two homes as part of Staffordshire Police's Operation Disrupt.
The new team was formed in July and was made up of neighbourhood officers, special constables and specialist staff from across the force.
It was set up in a bid to tackle violent crime and drug offences.
Police first targeted a house on Herondale in Hednesford, using a chainsaw and battering ram to remove the front door within seconds.
Officers then stormed inside and arrested a 32-year-old man on suspicion of possession of Class B drugs with intent to supply.
A quantity of drugs was seized alongside a machete and a BB gun after sniffer dogs scoured the home.
The same chainsaw and battering ram was then used to knock through the door of a home on Bath Road in Cannock.
Officers found a man on the toilet and detained him, but he was not arrested.
A search of the home from the dogs unit found a pellet gun rifle and a samurai sword, alongside a quantity of Class B drugs, believed to be cannabis.
A separate raid was carried out by another team on Operation Disrupt at a home on Melchester Walk, where a 21-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of possession of Class A and B drugs with intent to supply.
They came as a police chief has said the district is becoming "safer" - with statistics showing crime is falling.
Figures show that in 12 months from July 31 2018 to July 31 2019, town centre violence has reduced by 26 per cent from 1,789 to 1,492.
Youth offending is down by 9 per cent from 598 to 557, less serious violence with injury, such as assault offences, is down by 27 per cent from 212 and 131 - while crime as a whole is down five per cent from 6,814 to 6,448.
Chief Inspector Sarah Wainwright, the Cannock Chase Local Policing Team Commander, said: "This is a major crackdown tackling high threat and harm.
"Harm to people in our community, primarily concentrating on serious violence and drugs.
"At the end of the day, the fear that they wield in the community, we need to make sure that actually they're more frightened of us, than the fear they're putting out to members of the public.
"We'll use intelligence and anywhere with people and weapons, they will be dealt with.
"Our teams are really professional and do this day in, day out, we utilise them across the force and they're so good at what they do.
"We focus a lot on drugs because of the effect it has on vulnerable people, but also luring in children at an early age and getting involved in drugs, so we're looking at early intervention to stop that.
"The offenders will go out under the influence and commit serious violence, burglaries and other crimes, so it's important to target what the public says concerns them the most.
"We're tackling what our public is most concerned about - this is making the borough safer.
"We see a lot of criminals coming over from Bloxwich and Walsall way, so we work with West Midlands Police and British Transport Police to stop them coming over but also support them to divert and intervene."
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