Florence Police investigation locks 11 behind bars

FLORENCE, SC (WMBF) - Guns, drugs and cash all taken from one Florence home and 11 people arrested after a police investigation. That incident happened in East Florence and neighbors in that community say they're shocked that such a big bust was made so close to home.

"I can see their backyard from my backyard. I saw people going in and out but I never really thought much about it," said Pat Gibson-Hye Moore, Florence.

Pat Gibson-Hye Moore is the President of the East Florence Community Organization.

She says she was shocked to hear what investigators with the Florence Police Department found yesterday.

"When it happened I was shocked, where it happened, who it happened to was a surprise," said Gibson-Hye Moore.

Florence Police say the bust happened at a house on Ballard Street. They made 11 arrests, and now those people are facing multiple charges related to drugs, and stolen weapons.

A spokesman with the city of Florence says investigators had been watching the residence and collecting evidence and when they had enough they obtained a search warrant.

In addition to those eleven arrests, investigators found three guns, cash, marijuana and cocaine. Of those three guns confiscated two of them had earlier been reported as stolen.

"I think people feel relatively safe, but the elderly don't feel safe at all," said Gibson-Hye Moore.

Gibson-Hye Moore says crime in the area tends to cause people to stay indoors after dark.

"They're afraid of the crime, they're afraid of break-ins, they're afraid of killings so they don't come out that much," said Gibson-Hye Moore.

Since Gibson Hye-Moore is one of a few dedicated people trying to improve East Florence I asked her what she thinks East Florence needs to help the organizations efforts.

"I guess there isn't a real solution for any area. We just have to try and implement programs that can help people realize the importance of spending time with our youth," said Gibson-Hye Moore.

And more youth involvement is what several people in the East Florence Community told me would help lower the crime rate.

People in East Florence say if you invest in the younger generation... it's more likely they'll be empowered to make the right decisions.

Police tell me the investigation at the home on Ballard Street is still ongoing, but they don't expect to make anymore arrests.

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