Drug busts on the rise in Sullivan City area

Sullivan City police officers said drug busts near their city is on the rise, and it may have something to do with the holidays.

"It's scary," said Juany Hernandez, a Sullivan city resident.

Hernandez said she saw police pursuing a drug trafficker in the Havana area, near La Joya and Sullivan City.

"He was driving on the wrong side of the road," said Hernandez.

She said it was a scary sight, but she's glad she saw the driver when she did so that she could pull over safely.

"Because the one causing the pursuit doesn't think about the danger that they're causing those that are just peacefully going about their day," said Hernandez.

She said she's lived in Sullivan City for 27 years, and she's noticed that drug trafficking is on the rise in this area.

"Before, you didn't see so much activity every day, but now almost everyday there's pursuits," said Hernandez.

With just about 15 people on staff, police battle this drug war on a daily basis.

Sullivan City police said traffickers choose to attempt crossing a lot of their drugs here.

"We're closer to the river, there's better access from the river. We're isolated," said Sullivan City Sergeant David Rocha.

Just before 9 p.m. Monday night, an officer tried to conduct a routine traffic stop, but the car pulled away and started a pursuit starting in Sullivan City and ending in La Grulla.

The car entered into residential areas.

The car then hit a tree and the driver fled on foot.

He fell into a 20 foot hole but was located by border patrol.

The suspect is now in custody of Sullivan City police.

Police found 373 pounds of marijuana in the car.

"It's a smaller than average amount," said Rocha. "Usually they can range from 500 to 800."

Police here said since mid-October, these pursuits have become more common.

They said they've had up to 2 to 3 drug busts a week.One theory Sergeant Rocha has as to why drug trafficking is on the increase: "For the holidays, I'm sure certain people need to increase their profits."

But police say they don't see the activity dying down anytime soon.

As long as there's a demand for the drugs, there will be work for the traffickers.

Police said if you ever see a pursuit in progress, be sure to pull over and get out of the way as soon as possible.