The raids branched down into the Southern Tier as police executed a search warrant at a shop in Elmira suspected of selling synthetic drugs. As our Bill Mich tells us, authorities say the bath salts problem is a growing one in the region.
ELMIRA, N.Y. -- The issue of bath salts has been making headlines nationwide for months, but now the problem has found its way to the Southern Tier.
"It could be termed an epidemic. It is a huge problem. We have seen a lot of crime because of it. We see a lot of crime because of bath salts, as well as the synthetic marijuana. It is very dangerous," said Lt. Sean Holley of the Chemung County Sheriff's Office.
In a statewide effort to clean up the streets, police executed a raid on shops suspected of selling these synthetic drugs. In Elmira, the Police Department, along with the DEA and Chemung County Sheriff's Office, executed a federal search warrant at Gifts for Me, Myself and Eye on South Main Street.
"During the search warrant, they have been recovering some potential evidence and they will be taking items as evidence and it will be later determined what value it is," said Capt. Joseph Kain of the Elmira Police Department.
The suspected bath salts and synthetic marijuana will be taken to the U.S. District Attorney's office in Rochester for further testing. At this time, no arrests have been made. Police say the search warrant came after months of investigating the shop in Elmira and the sheriff's office had received numerous complaints about it from the surrounding neighborhood.
"Bath salts and synthetics drugs are a major concern to the community and law enforcement and we are now beginning to address those concerns," Holley said.
Authorities say to assist them in their effort against the synthetic drugs, call police with any concerns or potential information.