82 arrested in Orlando drug and weapons raid



ORLANDO, Fla. - Dozens of alleged criminals are off the streets following a major drug and gun crackdown in Orange County.

Channel 9 was there Tuesday as Orlando police served warrants at several homes but WFTV's Tim Barber has since learned the arrests were part of a larger operation.

Investigators targeted areas with a lot of violent crime, such as Holden Heights and Parramore, to identify and arrest alleged street-level criminals.

On Tuesday WFTV was there when masked investigators raided several homes on Columbia Street in Parramore.

"I look out the door, and see all the police surrounding, and people running everywhere," said resident Jeannette Hoover.

On Friday WFTV learned the bust was part of a massive 18-month drug and gun operation called Eternal Vigilance, which netted 82 arrests.

Parramore resident Demetrius Clark's family was not only shocked by the number of arrests but also grateful for them.

"I appreciate them for that, because that is so much, because we don't want our kids going around putting stuff in their mouth like pills they think is candy, but it's not," said Clark.

Orange County, Orlando agents and federal agents confiscated 16 guns and an assortment of drugs in the raids.

"The violence in the Americana corridor and south Orlando must be stopped, and the arrests that have been made over the past few days will go a long way toward bringing the problems there under control," said U.S. Attorney Lee Bentley.

The suspects were taken in using arrest warrants, search warrants and undercover drug buys, officials said.